Doris Janssen, Alexandre Lins, Thomas Schlegel, Michael Kühner, Gerhard Wanne
help to classify a web service and get information about what a service does and howit works.We think that intelligent retrieval and automatic composition of web services canonly be done using the more powerful abilities of a semantic description for webservices, as offered by OWL-S. Yet, these languages are the first step towards moreintelligent systems. In order to do the second step of retrieval and dynamiccombination of web services, some active modules are needed:
Retrieval: A web service retrieval mechanism (similar to an UDDI-Requester)could match semantic descriptions of web services with the request and thenretrieve the appropriate web service. While already first steps in this direction havebeen accomplished , a common approach to access these directoriessemantically is still missing.
Invocation: Web service invocation engines could support the invocation of services, check security issues, take part in service level agreements, etc..
Composition: Planners could compose processes from different servicecomponents and execute them.While the problem of dynamic web service invocation seems to be solved (using e.g.WSIF ) and there is currently a lot of work done for the composition of webservices (e.g. BPEL4WS, also some parts of OWL-S), regarding the retrieval of webservices other functionalities yet only basically implemented exist. For the problem of retrieving services there are prototypic solutions and suggestions like “Matchmaker” and “Semantic Discovery Systems” , and for planning there has been developedthe “Web Service Composition Via AI Planning module” within IBM’s ETTK .These are first prototypes to show concepts, and they still bring disadvantages withthem, like being stand alone or lacking public availability and acceptance.Within ETTK of IBM, the “pluggable discovery framework” allows easycombination of different, underlying retrieval mechanisms, like UDDI or WSIL .Yet, this framework concentrates on realization of discovery mechanisms, withoutusing methods for semantic discovery that would be necessary to improve currentdiscovery methods.In this article, we therefore present a framework for development and operation of web services on the Java platform, where the different modules can simply beplugged in. We will especially focus on an API for discovery and retrieval of WebServices that implements the connection with different service discovery engines, andthat provides operations for semantic discovery of web services described by OWL-S.
3 Holistic Vision of the Framework
A framework that supports all activities needed to act with semantic java webservices, like shown in Figure 1, can help coping with the question of handling webservices semantically, even more when services are possibly described in differentlanguages. The SemanticServiceRegistryAPI (SSRA) is such a framework coveringretrieval and invocation as well as planning and dynamic combination of webservices.