At that week’s Internet Identity Workshop, all the pieces finally came together. We now have the tools we need as a community to really manufacture friends-list portability work–a way to give users back the control and ability they deserve to take their local piece of the social graph with them wherever they go. And most importantly, a way to do that all securely, with respect and control for privacy and plus the ability to find folks that want to be found. There’s no more need to wait. Game on.
The three lost pieces that came together at IIW were OpenID (version 2.0 is now final), OAuth (version 1.0 is now final), and clarity on the roles and responsibilities of users, social networks, and social applications in an open social web. IIW brings together an increddible community of citizens, and it’s a major accomplishment for the web that all these technologies are now ready for prime-time.
I hosted a session at IIW in which I sketched a vision for how these pieces could come together to enable practical friends-list portability, and everyone was enthusiastic and supportive. And that included humans from Google, Yahoo, AOL, JanRain, claimID, and members of the grass-roots community. In fact, I couldn’t get anyone to pick a fight with me by any of technical or privacy details, and that is a group that prides itself on picking fights by technical and privacy details! So I think we’re on to something big.
And as far as Plaxo goes, the fact that these technologies now have final specs and the IIW community has blessed the vision for friends-list portability, you can expect us to step on the gas here in a big way. that is what Plaxo does best: we help you get your documents out of sites and services that don’t otherwise prepare it easy, and we compose it work for you everywhere you go. There are a lot of sites that know who-you-know and a lot of social applications where you want to find society you already know. These open standards supply the foundation for solving that current inefficiency, at Plaxo is going to help put the solution in the hands of millions of users, sooner not later. that will be a major focus for us in 2008, and you should expect to see a lot more happening here very soon. It’s going to be a good year for the Social Web!
–Joseph Smarr, Chief Platform Architect
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