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The Web Services Addressing specification (WS-Addressing) has reached yet another milestone on it’s way to becoming one of the key building block standards in the Web Services space. On March 21st, 2006 WS-Addressing advanced to Proposed Recommendation status.

What does it mean to be a proposed recommendation you ask? It means that we have achieved the goals we set for ourself with respect to interoperability. This means that have 4 implementations of the specifciation from various vendors interoping with eachother. In effect, this illustrates that the specification can be implemented as the spec writers thought, and more importantly that there didn’t appear to be any hidden gotchas that would impede implementers at large from writing an interoperable implementation.

The specification will now be analyzed by the Advisory Committee and then passed along with any comments to the director, Tim Berners-Lee (AKA TimBL), who will ultimately determine if there are any reservations that warrant throwing the specification back to the working group. My guess is that this won’t be the case, and the spec will then advance to Recommendation status, which will mean that the process is finished and that we have produced a technology standard.

WS-Addressing implementations will then start showing up in the wild as web services stacks incorporate the concepts in this specification into their designs. WS-Addressing is a basic building block that will hopefully enable higher level specifications such as WS-ReliableMessaging to take advantage of its features without re-inventing the wheel. Incidentally, The WS-RX TC met this week in North Carolina and has already decided to update their reference to the new version of the WS-Addressing spec.

I know that it’s been a long, and sometimes arduous process, with many long trips (Australia was my personal favorite) and phone calls to reach this milestone. Congratulations to all of my colleagues involved in the process! Now let’s just keep our fingers crossed that TimBL doesn’t find any holes and throw it back to the working group for revision.

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