J2EE Web Server or Container
A Web application runs within a Web container of a Web server. The Web container provides the runtime environment through components that provide naming context and life cycle management. Some Web servers may also provide additional services such as security and concurrency control. A Web server may work with an EJB server to provide some of those services. A Web server, however, does not need to be located on the same machine as an EJB server.
Web applications are composed of web components and other data such as HTML pages. Web components can be servlets, JSP pages created with the JavaServer Pages™ technology, web filters, and web event listeners. These components typically execute in a web server and may respond to HTTP requests from web clients. Servlets, JSP pages, and filters may be used to generate HTML pages that are an application’s user interface. They may also be used to generate XML or other format data that is consumed by other application components.
More on the general topic: Application Server Definition
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The Savvy Manager's Guide
Douglas K Barry is also the author of a book that explains Web Services, service-oriented architecture, and Cloud Computing in an easy-to-understand, non-technical manner.
Web Services, Service-Oriented Architectures, and Cloud Computing: The Savvy Manager's Guide (Second Edition)
by Douglas K Barry with David Dick
This is a guide for the savvy manager who wants to capitalize on the wave of change that is occurring with Web Services, service-oriented architecture, and—more recently—Cloud Computing. The changes wrought by these technologies will require both a basic grasp of the technologies and an effective way to deal with how these changes will affect the people who build and use the systems in our organizations. This book covers both issues. Managers at all levels of all organizations must be aware of both the changes that we are now seeing and ways to deal with issues created by those changes.