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Analysis

Depending on your experiences, you may be wondering what distinguishes this approach from what is currently available. That is a fair characterization until you venture below the surface. By placing an ad banner and links to some corporate sporting sponsors, a meager cash flow could be generated with the need of a second Web server or a first database server. Provided that the end user receives the location of the ASP in a relatively obfuscated way, nothing establishes our identity as an intermediary between Madison Square Garden and the corporate bookies.

Our first attempt, however, is plagued by challenges encountered by any number of Web companies flush with venture capital. First, very little information can be passed about the games (how would we distinguish between a college men's basketball game and a women's game?). By what mechanism is the data validated to ensure that the query string is in the right format? Why would our clandestine bookies rely on people at the games to provide reliable updates? What if the server is swallowed by a hole in the ground during an earthquake? And so on. All of those questions have one thing in common: What makes this a Web service? The truth is, well, nothing—yet.

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