SOAP over HTTP is obviously aimed at using port 80 to go through firewalls. You don't have to use it - I have seen plenty of folks using other ports with HTTP (8080 is popular since Tomcat comes configured to use it.) SOAP messages can be transmitted by many other paths besides HTTP - in my book I showed using email, JSM and JavaSpaces. If you want to know the latest W3C recommendations, go to the www.w3.org web site. Bill
One benefit of SOAP is that it allowas RPC to execute through a firewall. But to pass through a firewall, you will probably want to use 80. To the firewall, a SOAP conversation on 80 looks like a POST to a web page. However, there are extensions in SOAP which are specifically aimed at the firewall. In the future, it may be that firewalls will be configured to filter SOAP messages. But as of today, most firewalls are SOAP ignorant.
It would give a normal human mental abilities to rival mine. To think it is just a tiny ad: