The recent “Does SOA need MEST on top of REST?” article brought MEST back into the news, which is great. Jim and I talked about these ideas on how to reason about service- and message-oriented systems more than 2 years ago (just look at the date my last long MEST-related post was published). MEST always represented our attempt to highlight what’s good about REST, as an architectural style, in the context of service-oriented systems.
Of course, we didn’t merely describe MEST in the abstract but we also linked it to existing technologies (Web Services at the time) and particular implementation approaches. We even wrote a chapter for a book with specific code examples as illustration on how we believed a message-oriented API should look like and offered by a Web Services middleware platform. Unfortunately, after loooong delays, that book is going to be published in 2008 instead of 2006 :-( not our fault)
In addition to talking about APIs, we also applied our understanding of MEST to SSDL. A group of students in Newcastle won the first prize in a competition by building a service-oriented application using SSDL and we even saw an SSDL-driven framework, called Soya, emerging as a result of Patric‘s efforts.
Although I have moved on and I am not really active in discussions in this space, it’s great to see the community listening to what we had to say all that time ago. Jim, Ian, and I are now working on a book to apply our understanding of the Web, the discussions and experience from all these years ago in the context of building contemporary distributed applications. I find it to be another great educational activity.