Useful article over on O’Reilly: Don’t Be Afraid to Drop the SOAP recounting experiences and problems with SOAP while working on Bricolage, a Perl CMS. Probably doesn’t need saying but going to anyway: if you want reality, talk to the Perl guy.
The conclusion I’ve formed about SOAP is it really isn’t suited to the Internet and arguably not even for Extranets but rather for integrating disparate systems inside corporations with generations of legacy technology. And even then, you should consider XML-RPC first. The strongest thing I think SOAP has going for it is just that everyone agrees so it’s possible to find implementations on all sorts of platforms. There’s probably a lesson to be learned here about “design by committee”.
Was also interested to see that the author of the article, Sam Tregar, is now working on Krang. By chance had lots of opportunity to pick the brains of Perrin Harkins who’s also part of the Krang team and was talking about it at OSCOM. Aside from being a really nice guy, Perrin has seen it all when it comes to IT and the Internet so buy him a beer at the next conference (believe he’s seen at NY PHP sometimes as well). He also took the closing act in the Toy War with a smile.