Web services are platform-independent. This means that a Web service may be developed in a large number of languages to run on many platforms. The Java language and Java 2 Enterprise Edition (J2EE) platform provide features for building and deploying Web services. The benefits of the Java language and the J2EE platform are vendor independence and application portability. Applications built on the J2EE platform may be deployed on J2EE implementations from a large number of vendors. Using Java to develop Web services gives you the benefit of vendor independence in addition to the inherent platform independence of Web services.
Java has support for Web services through the Java Web Services Developer Pack (JWSDP). JWSDP contains libraries for generating XML and SOAP, processing XML, accessing service registries, and calling RPC-based Web services. JWSDP and the libraries it contains constitute the bulk of this book, so we won't go into detail here.