Information Systems Development

Web Services

Chapter 3 discussed how the move to cloud computing has allowed software to be viewed as a service. One option, known as web services, allows companies to license functions provided by other companies instead of writing the code themselves. Web services can greatly simplify the addition of functionality to a website.

Suppose a company wishes to provide a map showing the location of someone who has called their support line. By utilizing Google Maps API web services, the company can build a Google Map directly into their application. Or a shoe company could make it easier for its retailers to sell shoes online by providing a shoe sizing web service that the retailers could embed right into their website.

Web services can blur the lines between "build vs. buy". Companies can choose to build an application themselves but then purchase functionality from vendors to supplement their system.