In previous chapters we have discussed the architecture of information systems (Chapter 1), middleware and enterprise application integration (Chapters 2 and 3), and the basics of Web technology (Chapter 4). These chapters have shown a chronological evolution of the technology used for EAI and for building distributed applications. All these technologies have been rather successful in addressing several of the problems created by application integration. The success, however, has been restricted to certain settings (e.g., LAN-based systems, homogeneous middleware platforms, etc.). True application integration requires tools that go one step beyond what conventional middleware and EAI platforms have achieved. Web services and the associated technology are being leveraged to take such a step.
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