This is little Higgins. Does he look like something that would pick fight with InfoCard? I don't think so. Anyone who knows what we're trying to do here at SocialPhysics and especially in the Identity Gang knows that we're striving for a common language and understanding in an area whose depth and complexity humbles the mighty. Many of us building technology are influenced by how this conversation evolves, where the common ground is, and where we can build interoperability ‘bridges’. The implications for society are real. The last thing we want here is more division. This blog post is an attempt to put out the flames that have arisen from recent press coverage about Higgins, IBM and Novell:
Is Higgins competitive with InfoCard?
No. InfoCard is the code name for a Windows WinFX component that provides a user interface and related services that allow that Windows system to interoperate with service providers and identity providers using the WS-Trust and related protocols. Higgins, on the other hand, is a software framework that relies on service adapters that connect to external systems using that system's native protocols or APIs. [If you're familiar with the framework/provider design pattern, what I just called service adapters are Higgins providers.] We expect that in the next few months a WS-* service will be created for Higgins. Higgins when configured with this service and running on Linux, MacOS, etc. will fully interoperate with InfoCard running on Windows.
How is Higgins related to Microsoft?
We are all indebted to Kim for his important work on the seven laws of identity, for his sincerity and tolerance in reaching across traditional divides and ‘doing the right thing’ to make the web a safer place to live. Inspired by Kim, the Higgins mouse has mended his ways, is now completely law-abiding, and brushes his teeth twice a day. We also are grateful for the support Microsoft has given to the SocialPhysics project (of which Higgins is a part) through the Berkman Center.