Craig Burton cries ubiquity…

Craig Burton has a Master of Infrastructure from Novell. A co-founder, he was the major force in transforming it from a hardware company to one of the most innovative software forces in the history of networking. Later he got his Doctorate in Infrastructure from the Burton Group, which he founded with Jamie Lewis, proposing the Network Services Model.

Today, he released a new single on his blog, which went like this:

(To a Marley reggae beat): I, I, I cry ubiquity…

Ubiquity rules.

Identity 2.0 is a tough problem. This is because it not only requires a new architecture, but because it requires that the user rethinks how identity works.

It's a shift from

Identity 1.0–server-based user name and password


Identity 2.0–network-based user verified credentials.

This is no small shift. It changes everything.


It will only change everything when Identity 2.0 infrastucture becomes ubiquitous. Free. A given. Like air and sunshine.

Most would-be identity systems–OpenID, Ping, Sxip, Liberty to name a few–are not well designed to become ubiquitous. They each require that you buy into their architecture to work. You must adopt their protocols and system intrinsics. Open and Simple by itself just doesn't cut it.

What is needed is an architecture that is independent of mandated adoption.

This is part of the bueaty of Kim Cameron's Identity Metasystem. I can't emphasize the importance of such a design towards the objective of ubiquity.

I, I, I cry ubiquity.

By definition, a metasystem must be inclusive of the other underlying systems. So for those new to the discussion, InfoCards are not positioned against any of the systems Craig mentions. In theory you could have an InfoCard that represented an identity provider based on SXIP technology, or on Liberty technology or whatever else. In fact a number of people are thinking about building this type of offering.

Would the underlying systems have to add a bit of code? Yes.

But ubiquity and inclusiveness make such a potent combination that it would be well worthwhile.

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Kim Cameron

Work on identity.