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Systems and infrastructures are currently being developed to support Web services. The main idea is to encapsulate an organization's functionality within an appropriate interface and advertise it as Web services. While in some cases Web services may be utilized in an isolated form, it is normal to expect Web services to be integrated as part of workflow processes. The composition of workflow processes that model e-service applications differs from the design of traditional workflows, in terms of the number of tasks (Web services) available to the composition process, in their heterogeneity, and in their autonomy. Therefore, two problems need to be solved: how to efficiently discover Web services—based on functional and operational requirements—and how to facilitate the interoperability of heterogeneous Web services. In this paper, we present a solution within the context of the emerging Semantic Web that includes use of ontologies to overcome some of the problem. We describe a prototype that has been implemented to illustrate how discovery and interoperability functions are achieved more efficiently.


Attached is the unpublished, peer-reviewed author's version of the article. The final publication is available at Spring via