Working with Zend Framework one can create all the functionality needed by integration with other projects, they can include social networks, newsletter systems, online accounting platforms, payment systems and so on. Such integration is realized with the help of web services. Today it is quite difficult even to imagine a solid project without integration to any online systems for data exchange.
One of them is Soap. Soap (Simple Object Access Protocol) is a multifunctional protocol that allows to exchange structured data via Internet.
Though Soap-based services are supposed to be complicated for developers, there are tools which can simplify their realization. One of such instruments is Zend Framework and its Zend_Soap component.
As a rule the main complexity of Soap-services realization is WSDL service files generation support. Unlike other PHP libraries Zend_Soap provides AutoDiscover mode. To turn Soap server to AutoDiscover mode all the methods in the server class must be documented as PHPDoc format. The principle of AutoDiscover lies in “reading” comments and transforming these comments to WSDL document that is instantly generated and allows to use the service API.
Thus Zend Framework contains all the tool kit for fast web service implementation, based on a such popular protocol as Soap. Inter-application data exchange is incredibly simplified by the possibilities of AutoDiscover mode and availability of both server and client side.