MSN and Windows Live CardSpace Beta

You can now use Information Cards at Hotmail and all the other MSN/Windows Live sites. 

Just go here to associate an Information Card with your existing account.   I found that both Windows CardSpace and the Mac DigitalMe information card selectors worked beautifully with the system.  Check out this video to see what it was like registering and logging in from my Mac using DigitalMe. 

It's worth taking a step back to think about what can go wrong when you add a feature of this importance to a site with 300 million accounts.  If things don't work, you don't have a software bug – you have a trainwreck.  So the Windows Live people have done a lot of thinking, planning and testing in order both to create a cool experience and keep from confusing their users.   

There are still some anomolies.  In the words of the Beta announcement: Continue reading MSN and Windows Live CardSpace Beta

Boys scrap over Facebook

 Jason Calacanis, CEO of Weblogs  and Master of New Media, took the lid off a noisy can of worms this week when he declared Facebook Bankruptcy, exhausted by his facebook chores of responding to endless invitations, requests and guilt trips.  In sum, he says, “Folks have just opted in to another out of control inbox…. I'm opting out.”

This was all too much for Scoble,  whose river of crocodile tears led to “Calacanis can't keep up with Facebook“.  Scoble apparently manages more than 4,000 Facebook friends (including me – I'm down here somewhere) compared to Jason's mere 395, saying, “More of the best names in tech are on Facebook than any other social network I’m on.” and “Facebook is the new business card”.  He sees Facebook as new age marketing.  (Is this why half my homepage consists of Scoble videos? Just kidding…) 

Nestled between the extremes is a piece by Rex Hammock, who I think gets it right when he says, “Facebook is a sandbox I’m playing in — but it has a long way to go before it can hope to be the world I live in.”  Continue reading Boys scrap over Facebook

Charles Fitzgerald doing “platformonics”

I just discovered that Charles Fitzgerald, General Manager of Platform Strategy at MS, has started a blog called Platformonics.  I know a lot of industry people will be interested – Charles has really been around the block at the highest level.  I think he learned more from “Hailstorm” than anyone else who I've spoken to.  Beyond that, he's a great business person, well-read and beautifully wry.  Here's a piece full of implications called There is no free lunch (especially in France):

The BBC reports the French security service has told French government officials not to use Blackberries because their data is stored in foreign countries and could be susceptible to prying eyes. Expect many more such awakenings going forward to the tradeoffs to putting data in the cloud.  Not just national security concerns, but trade secrets, privacy and compliance requirements will all require people to think more explicitly about the risks and tradeoffs of where you put your data and what can happen to it.  Today's all or nothing approach is a crummy way to do it. Three contenders for the most amazing part of this story:

  1. They're just realizing this now?  Did they just figure it out or did some incident precipitate this decision?  There is probably a pretty good spy novel in if you combine this with almost any headlines from France in recent years.
  2. French officials are “flouting the ban”.  I predict the upcoming ban on smoking in public places in France takes “flouting” to a whole new level.
  3. RIM insists the US National Security Agency can't read content on their service.  Disciples of Taleb might call that epistemological arrogance.

Oh yeah, I almost forgot.  Charles has been a great supporter of the Laws of Identity – ribbing me by somehow learning to recite the title with reverb.  He was also one of the first to see the potential of Information Cards.