UPDATE- Fixed some typos here, forgive the errors in my notes.

Presenter- Srik Raghavan

The following are notes from the talk:

This talk started with the goals for web services in SQL Server. The goals for the implementation are outreach and interoperability. By providing a SOAP-based access mechanism for SQL Server, the SQL Server team has enabled any client with access to a SOAP stack to communicate with SQL Server. The current SQL Server technology for data access relies on TDS. With SOAP and http.sys, you can use SOAP to communicate directly with SQL Server. According to Srik, "SOAP access is on par with TDS." Yukon web services are implemented via the use of HTTP endpoints. These endpoints are mapped to the server and use DDL for administration and configuration functions. Web service access functions are supported in two ways- RPC access and batch access. RPC access enables acess to UDFs and stored procedures, both of the T-SQL and CLR-based variety. The batch access mechanism for web service access enables you to run ad hoc SQL queries.

The CREATE HTTP ENDPOINT DDL statement is used to map HTTP endpoints to a services or services in SQL Server. A variety of security mechanisms for endpoints are supported, and WS-Security use in tandem with SQL Authentication will be supported by RTM. A session mechanism that shares state across multiple requests will also be added by RTM. A demo of the creation of an HTTP endpoint was shown (will refer to online session materials once posted). An overview of the WSDL support and the SOAP response mappings was provided as well. The functionality supports the extension of non-trivial database objects as services. The demos included the invocation of a few services using a Perl client. Srik also wrote some of the code on the fly and tweaked his demos. Always a good sign. He also demonstrated the SQL Web bench tool, available to people already participating in the beta program for Yukon. This tool enables you to view and manage web services endpoints for Yukon in a browser. Very useful, at least until this functionality is baked into the SQL Workbench.
End notes.

Although I've been working with Yukon for nearly a year, I am glad to see some of this functionality starting to come together. While I think that the applications for this HTTP endpoint functionality are going to be fairly limited for most users, it does provide another choice for SQL Server developers needing to expose their data in a variety of ways. While these endpoints will NOT support bulk loads or template mappings supporting updateable views, I can see a number of people that have gone down the SqlXml path for formatting and accessibility purposes moving to HTTP endpoints. While I still think that CLR hosting provides the best new feature set for developers, the web services functionality will be valuable to many as well.