REBOL Technologies

Benefits of REBOL/Services

Carl Sassenrath, CTO
REBOL Technologies
30-Nov-2004

Article #0057
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Building Internet solutions based on REBOL/Services provides these benefits:

  • Built-in Standard Service Model
    REBOL/Services provides a standard model for supporting distributed services (SOA) within client/server and peer-to-peer networks. It will be included as a standard component in every new release of REBOL. Applications that take advantage of it can depend on it always being there.

  • Lightweight Implementation
    Most existing web service standards are far too complex because they do not benefit from being dialect-based as is the normal practice in REBOL. With REBOL an SOA (service oriented architecture) can be deployed using just a 300KB REBOL/Core as the engine to provide services that are powerful, portable, and easier to maintain.

  • "Both-Sided" Technology
    The application and the server are created with a singular software technology; REBOL lives on both sides of the connection. That's a good thing, because let's admit it, building distributed applications is hard enough already. REBOL/Services do not require SOAP, XML, UML, UDDI, XSL, WSDL, XML-RPC, or any of the other old school technologies. All you need is REBOL.

  • Rapid Solutions Building
    Our goal is for developers to implement a typical service within just a few hours, depending on the needs of the service. In addition, because service implementations are only a few kilobytes of code, developers can make changes and improvements in less time at less cost.

  • Network Efficient
    For X Internet applications, REBOL services can offer 50 times greater efficiency when compared to standard web technology. That gives service providers the advantage of serving many times more clients with their existing infrastructures.

  • Secure by Default
    Security is assured through the use of REBOL's unique dialecting method, robust authentication, and a variety of high strength encryption algorithms. REBOL/Services supports AES, the Advanced Encryption Standard (as required for federal government usage), RSA, DES, and Blowfish security methods.

  • Transport Independent
    REBOL/Services allow you to use whatever lower level physical, data, and transport protocols that you prefer. For example, you can use a direct TCP port connection, tunnel through existing HTTP services, use it over cell phone networks, or even point-to-point RS232 serial interfaces. REBOL/Services operates at the session and presentation layers (OSI layers 5 and 6) of the network model.

  • Inter-Application Communication
    REBOL/Services can be used for more than just Internet or intranet applications. Because it is so lightweight, every application has the potential to become its own service provider. For example, applications from contact databases to image processing software can provide an external service-based interface that can be invoked with minimal effort from within other applications. (Those who have experienced AREXX on the Amiga will be familiar with the power and simplicity of this application interface model.)

  • Multi-Service Command Interfaces
    As part of the design a single service can support multiple command protocols within the same server interface. This allows standard command-sets, such as discovery methods, file transfer, user management, or service administration and monitoring to co-exist with custom commands-sets that have been implemented for specific distributed applications.

  • An Open Standard
    REBOL/Services will be provided as an open standard with the source code available from the REBOL web site. The license will allow free use for personal, commercial, and educational purposes. We hope developers will contribute their own enhancements, fixes, and independent command-set modules, as well as documentation, tutorials, and examples.

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