Marc Canter’s AlwaysOn article finally is out. Breaking the Web Wide Open!
For decades, “walled gardens” of proprietary standards and content have been the strategy of dominant players in mainframe computer software, wireless telecommunications services, and the World Wide Webâ€”it was their successful lock-in strategy of keeping their customers theirs. But like it or not, those walls are tumbling down. Open web standards are being adopted so widely, with such value and impact, that the web giantsâ€”Amazon, AOL, eBay, Google, Microsoft, and Yahooâ€”are facing the difficult decision of opening up to what they don’t control.
Identity is the first topic covered and he does a great job summarizing:
Right now, you don’t really control your own online identity. At the core of just about every online piece of software is a membership system. Some systems allow you to browse a site anonymouslyâ€”but unless you register with the site you can’t do things like search for an article, post a comment, buy something, or review it. The problem is that each and every site has its own membership system. So you constantly have to register with new systems, which cannot share dataâ€”even you’d want them to. By establishing a “single sign-on” standard, disparate sites can allow users to freely move from site to site, and let them control the movement of their personal profile data, as well as any other data they’ve created.
Identity 2.0 is all about users controlling their own profile data and becoming their own agents. This way the users themselves, rather than other intermediaries, will profit from their ID info. Once developers start offering single sign-on to their users, and users have trusted places to store their dataâ€”which respect the limits and provide access controls over that data, users will be able to access personalized services which will understand and use their personal data.
The Initiatives:â€¨Right now, Identity 2.0 is under construction through various efforts from Microsoft (the “InfoCard” component built into the Vista operating system and its “Identity Metasystem”), Sxip Identity, Identity Commons, Liberty Alliance, LID (NetMesh’s Lightweight ID), and SixApart’s OpenID.â€¨â€¨More Movers and Shakers:â€¨Identity Commons and Kaliya Hamlin, Sxip Identity and Dick Hardt, the Identity Gang and Doc Searls, Microsoft’s Kim Cameron, Craig Burton, Phil Windley, and Brad Fitzpatrick, to name a few.