Sunday, November 22, 2009

Identity and the browser

Identity is a big problem on the web. People have to set up endless usernames and passwords for each website, type the same basic information (name, address etc) into each one, remember passwords and change them regularly, and a hundred other tasks.

Recently there have been some improvements. OpenID has emerged as a standard way to assert identity, and oAuth a secure way to share personal data from one website to another. Google Friend Connect and Facebook Connect have emerged as identity hubs to enable users to share basic information.

Despite these breakthroughs, the problems remain. In fact, Google Friend Connect and Facebook Connect raise the spectre of monolithic corporate control over people’s identities.

Instead, I think much of identity should belong in the browser itself. After all, the technical term for a browser is “user agent”. It knows exactly which websites you are logging on to, and how. It should be able to negotiate account details and passwords on the user’s behalf.

Here are some of the aspects of identity I think browsers should handle:

  • Log on to websites automatically for you, managing passwords and automatically changing them regularly
  • Managing basic account data e.g. name, address, bank details, etc, and which websites have access to it
  • Presence & syndicating it to websites chosen by the user
  • Incoming notifications & managing who can trigger them

Mozilla have recently begun work on several of these areas. I think that’s a great move; as a non-profit dedicated to improving the web, they have the right attitude and trust. This could go in two directions; either corporate control over people’s identities, or enabling users to get better control themselves over their online identity. I sincerely hope it’s the latter!

17 comments:

855 said...

回應是最大的支持^^y~~~甘吧嗲..................................................

namie said...

你怎麼能經過一片海,而忘記它的藍?.........................

連絡 said...

得意人,聽腳步聲就知道。..................................................

5225 said...

welcome to join us!!聊天室........................................

籃球 said...

It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.............................................

try said...

沒有經過反省的人生,是不值得活的人生 ....................................................

身材維持 said...

thank u........................................

微笑每一天 said...

thank for share, it is very important . ̄︿ ̄

不舒服的 said...

haha~ funny! thank you for your share~ ........................................

彥宏 said...

以簡單的行為愉悅他人的心靈,勝過千人低頭禱告。........................................

念強念強 said...

如果你不思考未來,你便不會有未來..............................

明宏明宏 said...

TAHNKS FOR YOUR SHARING~~~VERY NICE.................................................

HarriettAckley0317 said...

辛苦了!祝你愈來愈好!........................................

IdellA231_Fecteau1 said...

能付出愛心就是福;能消除煩惱就是慧。......................................................

NicolaSigel0508 said...

It is no use crying over spilt milk...................................................

Heriberto said...

幸福是人人都要,又怎麼可能都歸你所有?要知道這世界幸福本來就不多........................................

茂鴻 said...

Well done!........................................