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We found a way for applications to understand each other. This may come as a surprise to some other software companies....

"Semantic differences, remain the primary roadblock to smooth application integration, one which Web Services alone won't overcome. Until someone finds a way for applications to understand each other, the effect of Web services technology will be fairly limited. When I pass customer data across [the Web] in a certain format using a Web Services interface, the receiving program has to know what that format is. You have to agree on what the business objects look like. And no one has come up with a feasible way to work that out yet -- not Oracle, and not its competitors..."

--- Oracle Chairman and CEO Larry Ellison