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Rearranging the Atoms
April 23-24, 2002 in Toronto, Canada

special members' workshop
Beyond the Hype of Web Services
Monday, April 22, 2002, 9:00


overview speakers agenda

Topics include:
• Things that think
• Power innovations
• Radio frequency identification
• Reengineering nature
• Reinventing biology
• Implanted and embedded microprocessors
• Applied fine grain computing

conference overview
The past two decades can be characterized as the dawn of bits, an era that redefined everything from commerce to education to leisure by moving away from atoms and their cumbersome properties of size, shape and weight. In fact, understanding e-business is, in great measure, grasping the difference between bits and atoms.

In contrast, the next twenty years will be driven by the merger of bits and atoms, not by their separation. More and more, bits will be embedded in atoms, down to the molecular scale. Biology will become computational. Things will think. Packages will know what's in them. Pills will know when they are taken.

Included in this new equation is the extraordinary problem of distribution and logistics. Basic issues of energy, security and timing will require considerable innovation in physical infrastructures as well as basic vehicular concepts. Far reaching advances will result from things knowing where they are, what they are, and where they are going.

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Dr. Peter J. Bentley, Author, Digital Biology, and Honorary Research Fellow, University College London
Dr. Keith Bolton, Chief Technology Officer, Applied Digital Solutions, Inc.
Mr. Stephen J. Buckley, Manager, Electrical Product Innovation, DaimlerChrysler
Dr. Neil Gershenfeld, Director, Physics and Media Group, MIT Media Lab
Mr. Tom Grant, Chairman, ThingMagic
Mr. Jerry Hallmark, Manager, Energy Technologies Lab, Motorola
Dr. Joe Jacobson, Leader, MIT Media Lab NanoMedia Group and Co-founder, E Ink Corp.
Dr. Doug Lenat, President, Cycorp
Mr. Amory B. Lovins, CEO Research, Rocky Mountain Institute
Dr. Jörg-Uwe Meyer, Head, Sensorsystems/Microsystems Department, Fraunhofer Institute for Biomedical Engineering
Dr. Tom Ray, Professor of Zoology, University of Oklahoma
Ms. Lorna Ross, Lead Research Scientist, WellBeing Group, Media Lab Europe
Mr. Charlie Trimble, President, U.S. GPS Industry Council and Founder, Trimble Navigation

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workshop description
Ed Yourdon, Consultant and Author
Simply put, web services will enable web-based applications to dynamically interact with other web applications using an XML message protocol such as SOAP, XML-RPC or XMLP. Emerging standards for describing, promoting and discovering these services are ebXML, UDDI and WSDL. Microsoft's .NET and Sun's Sun ONE are major implementations of the concept. The goal is to enable one application to find another on the Internet that provides a needed service and to seamlessly exchange data with it.

Are web services the next Holy Grail, able to be the Internet counterpart to software components, in which off-the-shelf modules interact with each other? Will attempts at cooperation and agreement among industries to define business processes and transactions really work?

The debate is now raging over these web services. On one side, we have those who argue they are superior technically and economically to current models, that they will transform the global economy, and that the power of web services is so compelling that every business will become both a supplier and consumer of web services.

On the other side, questions abound about standards, ease of use, security, trustworthiness, interoperability, and whether web services are a background technology or a paradigm shift.
In this one-day workshop, we'll look at:

• Explore what web services really are;
• Assess what is hype and what is real;
• Examine near-term, medium-term, and long-term trends;
• Identify their stengths/benefits versus the weaknesses/risks; and
• Evaluate their likely impact on business and IT strategy.

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