SOAP. Simple Object Access Protocol. A Microsoft developed distributed object protocol using XML over HTTP for the communication. It is intended for communication between systems, where a system may be a single machine or a group of machines behind a single point of contact. Fairly similar to XML-RPC.

The White Paper is located at

SOAP is no longer a Microsoft-owned protocol. IBM (and Lotus, as if they're not IBM at the moment) have contributed significantly and are guiding the protocol in a more open direction.
To find out more about Simple Object Access Protocol V1.1, visit (

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