Web Service

Doug Kent dkent at austin.rr.com
Thu Jun 20 12:08:46 EDT 2002

Jim, thanks for your response!  See my comments interspersed below.
There are several useful clarifications that you have suggested.

> After speaking with our database and systems administration
> specialists (Louis Florit and Clarke Jeffris), it appears
> that the .NET Framework is still in beta and therefore may be
> in a transitory state and not desirable for basing a large
> amount of work on at this time.

You correctly note that the .NET *Server* is still in beta.  However,
please be aware that Windows XP Server with .NET installed on it will
work fine *now* for the applications I envision.  The .NET Framework is
complete and available in final release form.  One can install it on
Windows XP and it works great.  .NET Server, the product that is still
in beta, will have .NET bundled into it, and will have new features
targeted to large-scale deployments.

> developing this capability.  Your proposed work might require
> a more formal systems analysis, I would think, before diving
> headlong into this.  But that's just my feeling.

Good suggestion, I think.  To the extent such research and analysis is
required, I'll hope to rely on you domain experts to do it.  And you can
leave the software engineering up to me.

> I would take it from this that you mean you would write the
> code, or would you ask that others do this?

I'm sorry I wasn't clear.  I absolutely intend to do the coding myself.
I would be happy to receive material compensation, but that would only
be gravy, and I do not intend to ask for it.  I am currently not fully
employed, and while I have the extra time, I want to apply my skills to
a fulfilling cause.

> As alluded to above, there has already been a tremendous
> amount of effort by that has gone into building Web pages and
> user-interfaces to display research data,

I need to be more clear about my proposal:  Take the CoRIS web site for
an example (www.coris.noaa.gov).  They have what to me is an impressive
new web site that intends to provide a wealth of data to the coral
research community.

Suppose I wanted to create my own web page or computer application that
could *programmatically* access CoRIS' data, bypassing the CoRIS web
site's GUI?  I would need NOAA to have wrapped the functionality of
their web site into a set of computer interfaces that I (or anyone else)
could use programmatically and remotely.

I propose to write those interfaces using the Web Services feature of
the .NET Framework.  Thereby those interfaces could be consumed by any
application written in any language running on any operating system
anywhere in the world that has Internet access.  Their functionality
would not be limited to that of the CoRIS web page GUI, but to the
limits of the imaginations and resources of researchers around the

Let me know if that's still not complete or clear.

Thanks, Jim, for all your other suggestions and your expression of moral

Doug Kent

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