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Complete novice question - do I need a web service for this?

 
 
mtait
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      09-24-2006
Hi - I'm not sure if I need a web service, and am looking for advice,

I have an .net2 web application for consultants, where it shows if they have
availability which can be booked - each of the consultants also have their
own website, and a couple have now asked if it's possible to show the
availability 'live' on their site (currently, they add a link to their site,
which opens up the calendar on my server, for their time - so people can book
their time).

The websites they have are in all different languages (php, asp the most
common) - would a web service, automatically return XML which they could use
in a php/asp application, which could run on their web site - for example, as
a ticker type display, or anything else they choose?

I've heard about web services - but I really don't yest have a grasp of what
they are for. Would it help achieve what I'm being asked above, and if so,
where can I look for straightforward examples (preferably in .net2 vb), to
get me started?

Thanks for any help,

Mark
 
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mtait
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      09-25-2006
Hi Simon - thank you. The people who want to use it, as opposed to a popup
to my application, will have to get someone to write a 'reader' in their
chosen language to call the web service. I just thought making the data
available through a webservice, would help them integrate it in any way they
choose on their site (calendar, ticker etc etc).

Does a web service (if I were to select it in Visual Studio) return XML by
default - or do I need to program it in a specific way? Are there any simple
examples so I can start learning?

Thanks again, Mark

"Simon Harvey" wrote:

> Hi there,
>
> A webservice wouldnt be a crazy idea to this sort of problem. The thing
> about web services is that they can be called from numerous different
> languages and return data in a format that any platform can understand.
>
> If I understand you correctly though, it would seem that you, or someone
> else would need to write so sort of client in the various languages that
> they are using, so that the XML your web serivce publishes can be read
> and displayed. That would be a pain - but its certainly possible.
>
> Hope that helps
>
> Simon
>
> mtait wrote:
> > Hi - I'm not sure if I need a web service, and am looking for advice,
> >
> > I have an .net2 web application for consultants, where it shows if they have
> > availability which can be booked - each of the consultants also have their
> > own website, and a couple have now asked if it's possible to show the
> > availability 'live' on their site (currently, they add a link to their site,
> > which opens up the calendar on my server, for their time - so people can book
> > their time).
> >
> > The websites they have are in all different languages (php, asp the most
> > common) - would a web service, automatically return XML which they could use
> > in a php/asp application, which could run on their web site - for example, as
> > a ticker type display, or anything else they choose?
> >
> > I've heard about web services - but I really don't yest have a grasp of what
> > they are for. Would it help achieve what I'm being asked above, and if so,
> > where can I look for straightforward examples (preferably in .net2 vb), to
> > get me started?
> >
> > Thanks for any help,
> >
> > Mark

>

 
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mtait
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      09-25-2006
Simon - thank you. The link you sent looks exactly like where I should start
to learn.

All the best with your project too.

Cheers, Mark


"Simon Harvey" wrote:

> Hi Mark,
>
> I havent done much with webservices myself really (which is why I posted
> a question here as well)!
>
> As I understand it, ASP.net makes creating web service very easy -
> especially if the receiving clients are also written using .net. Visual
> Studio has loads of little helpers that make creating and consuming web
> services almost as simple as calling any other method.
>
> The only thing I'm not sure about is what you have to do in say, php, to
> consume the service. I'm pretty sure that marking a method with the
> [webmethod] attribute sets up the web service to return xml. I don't
> really know what that xml looks like though as I've never had cause to
> look (yet)
>
> You can also write your own XML to the output stream which I'm guessing
> probably isn't as widely practiced because the .net runtime can
> automatically serialize custom classes and base types like arrays of
> things (maybe an array of Appointment objects?)
>
> Anyway - there are lots of examples out there for doing quite simple
> stuff. If you really havent done any work along these lines at all, the
> following site might be a good place to start. I has the basic samples
> in a few different languages, which might help you.
>
> http://samples.gotdotnet.com/quickstart/aspplus
>
> Hope that helps
>
> Kindest Regards
>
> Simon
>

 
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