In Appendix A, I showed you the AtomPub model for creating RESTful endpoints based on the concepts of collections, feeds, and entries. I mentioned that AtomPub is quickly becoming a standard way of building services even when those services don’t use the traditional data for which AtomPub was created. .NET 3.5 SP1 also includes functionality outside the core WCF functionality, and one of those pieces of functionality is called ADO.NET Data Services.
Code-named Astoria and released fairly early under that name, ADO.NET Data Services is a WCF extension framework, built on the Web Programming Model, for building AtomPub services. Specifically, it is used for building AtomPub services on top of an in-memory data model. This data model can be, and often is, backed up by a relational database, but it doesn’t have to be. You can think of ADO.NET Data Services as an easy way to create a RESTful service endpoint based on AtomPub on top of a relational database model, although it has possibilities beyond that.
Built on top of the core Web Programming Model of WCF, ADO.NET Data Services is a framework for building RESTful services. Specifically, it is a framework for building AtomPub-based RESTful services on top of data. In some ways, ADO.NET Data Services provides a particular set of WCF programming constraints on top of AtomPub, as AtomPub provides a particular set of constraints on top of REST.
Earlier versions of ADO.NET ...