Thursday, January 12, 2006

a Wimpy argument

One of the really neat things about axioms is that you don't have to prove them. In a recent post, lightweight ID (LID)'s Johannes Ernst seems to imbue the phrase "given that" with axiomatic properties when he says:

"Given that so many blogs are already a form of URL-based identity"

However, "given that" is really a set up to a hypothesis, the phrase "imagine that" is a synonym, for example. But implying that "so many blogs are already a form of URL-based identity" is axiomatic is necessary for this argument, since that implies the statement can't be challenged.

But a blog is no more a form of identity than a hamburger is.

"You are what you eat" is a pithy expression and - in some instances - we can imply the value of some identity attributes based on the diet a person chooses, but there's no particular food item which could be considered as the "identity" of the person. Not even when the two are closely identified, such as the hamburger with the character Wimpy!

A blog may be the expression of a person's identity - or, at least, an expression of one or more personas of that identity. But a blog can never be equivalent to an identity.

Comments:
Does this imply that that you have no belief in URL based identity or are you saying (as I think you are), that in order for a URL based identity to actual relate to the identity of the user, the user must assert their identity to that URL in the case of standards such as OpenLID and MyLID using some form of credentials?
 
I mean exactly what I said, Paul: a blog is not an identity. Neither is it an identifier except in an abstract sense (e.g., "Dave, who write the Virtual Quill blog"). A URL at least has the benefit of being unique within a worldview context (necessary, but not sufficient, for an identity). But a URL is not a blog, nor vice versa.
 
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