BEA Systems announced support on Monday for a new Java specification that should allow for greater interoperability among Web services applications, regardless of which vendor's software is used to build and deploy them.
BEA said it added support for a certified implementation of the Java API for XML-based Remote Procedure Call, or JAX-RPC, in its WebLogic application server. It claimed to be the first of the big Java application server vendors to include support for the technology in its product.
JAX-RPC defines a set of standard Java APIs (application programming interfaces) that allow developers to create XML-based Web services using SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol) as the messaging protocol. It was approved in June by the Java Community Process, the multivendor group that signs off on new Java standards.
JAX-RPC should allow Web services to interoperate regardless of the programming language they are written in or the platform on which they are deployed. Once other vendors have adopted the standard, a developer should be able to deploy a Web service on an application server from Oracle Corp., for example, with the knowledge that procedures can be executed on a computer running another vendor's software.
A handful of other vendors have already announced support for JAX-RPC in their products, including Billerica, Massachusetts-based Silverstream Software Inc., a Java tools vendor being acquired by Novell Inc. BEA claimed to be the first of the big application server vendors to support the specification. Its rivals include IBM Corp., Sun Microsystems Inc. and Oracle.
Sun has posted a frequently asked questions page about JAX-RPX at http://java.sun.com/xml/jaxrpc/faq.html. Developers can download version 1 of the specification at http://java.sun.com/xml/downloads/jaxrpc.html.