In my experience, most of the companies have been moving to developing web services with REST. Therefore, I'd be interested in knowing if there's any benefit in preparing for the SCJWS certification which is primarily based on SOAP web services.
That's really two different questions (Are SOAP WS still being used? and Is it worthwhile to pursue the SCDJWS certificate?), and they have different answers.
To the former the answer is yes - lots of SOAP WS are being used, and plenty of new ones are still being developed. While the WS-* stack of specifications adds complexity to a WS architecture, it also adds value (particularly WS-Security and BPEL).
If pursuing and/or having the certificate has value depends on the job market you're in; in some those have lots of value, and in some they have close to none. IMO, it'd be more important to be knowledgeable about SOAP and REST in general, and to be able to build WS using some of the eminent implementations (like Axis2 and Jersey) than to have the exam, but YMMV. But you're right that the WS landscape has moved away a bit from what the SCDJWS covers.
Thanks Dittmer. That makes perfect sense.I have a basic understanding of web services and have used Axis2 for both top down and bottom up approaches. I have also read people recommending RMH's book for SCJWS. Would you suggest buying that book or do you have any other recommendation.