Web services has been over-hyped for a long time. Book sales are poor. You don’t hear too many people talking about it other than “REST vs. WS-*” arguments.
I realised that there doesn’t seem to be a community here. I think this may be similar to there not really being a community that revolved around JRMP or IIOP itself?
People want to get together to talk about meaty stuff:
How can I get work done
Open source software often has great community, as the software that is successful normally comes out of pragmatic need. It also does well as the group often encourages participation, and you feel like you can make a difference. If you find a bug, you want to put it in JIRA as you know someone will be in there. How many times do you have to fight for this with larger commercial companies, who get to it after they finish up bugs that have come in from their largest clients (NOTE: lots of good commercial companies take care of their lil guys too).
The interesting thing to note is that Web services is happening. More and more projects have a need to use some form of them for inteop, or other reasons. However, it is often a fringe part of the project. “I need to do X, Y, Z, and need to expose a service A that can be consumed safely”.
My main participation with a WS community is finding bugs and issues where interop is a painful broken promise :)
It is interesting to compare this to the communities that jumped up when EJB was brought into life. A lot of developers were forced into that world, and quickly developed hacks (patterns) to make it usable. We haven’t really seen the same take off in the WS space.
With the EJB mess behind us, we are able to focus on writing good software, with real OO models, and yes with services of some kind.