It has been a while since I have blogged about identity. That does not mean I haven’t been actively thinking, reading or discussing the subject. Recently I came across one recent and one older article on identity, I consider both articles a must-read.
The first one, the oldest, was written by Bob Blakley and discusses the feasiblity of the first law of identity “User control and consent”. A very good read. It touches on most of the difficulties with “user-centric” identity systems. In the Identity Gang discussion group I have touched on the feasability of identity meta-systems and the forces that could make or break it. This article however does a much better job at this. No matter how interesting identity meta-systems are, I yet have to see some good arguments that proof that current silos (Google, Yahoo!, MSN …) would want to give up the control they have over your personal (identity) information. Or will we end up with a Hobson’s Choice. They support the identity meta-system and will play along with specifications like OpenID or Infocards … as long as they are the identity provider issuing the assertions.
The second one, titled “Law of Relational Symmetry” was posted only a few days ago on the Identity Blog of the Burton Group. It builds upon the reservations made in the first article and gives a, well thought out, try in explaining why user-centry identity systems are very hard to accomplish and where potential solutions may be found.
So, grab some quality identity time and go read these articles!