Here’s my (incomplete) list of scenarios of when you’d want an alternative to a RESTful protocol….
Very good list. Stu also quotes my three suggestions; taken out of context, one might believe that I believe them to be true. I don’t; here’s what I wrote in my original post:
I’ll make some guesses (note that these don’t reflect my opinions)
WS-* is “protocol independent”, while REST (in all practical relevance) is tied to HTTP.
The WS-* specs address “enterprise” concerns that REST/HTTP can’t handle
It’s much easier to expose an existing system that has a “transactional” interface (in the TP monitor sense) via WS-* than via REST, since the latter requires a real architectural change and the former doesn’t
Are there any other benefits that WSDL/SOAP/WS-* is claimed to have over REST/HTTP?
For the record, I believe that (1) is an illusion since the HTTP protocol is just replaced with a different protocol, one that has no or at least a much worse design, and the protocol independence is an extremely leaky abstraction in real applications anyway; regarding (2), the specs that do address enterprise concerns are not yet widely adopted anyway and in many cases address something that doesn’t belong in the infrastructure layer anyway. I do believe that (3) is a valid point.