Thursday, December 13, 2007
Tools are just tools, you knowI've always been impressed by Pamela Dingle's ability to cut through the rhetoric and get to the heart of a problem. She's done it again.
Patrick Harding, Nishant Kaushik, Johannes Ernst and Matt Flynn recently participated in an impassioned (if not actually heated) discussion of User-Centric identity in the enterprise. Pamela chimed in with her usual level-headed approach.
Then, after the guys debated philosophy, Pamela - once again - reminded them that using the tools of so-called "user centric" identity (CardSpace and OpenID, for example) doesn't require buying into any sort of philosophy of data control. They're simply tools. As she put it: "If you try to tell me that using a tool such as the Identity Metasystem to accomplish something other than a user-centric philosophy is wrong, I will also laugh at you."
As I said last spring, "I’m addressing the enterprise market, which needs to pay attention to CardSpace right now." CardSpace and the identity metasystem - whether all Microsoft or using open source tools - can be a very useful tool in the enterprise, especially in an enterprise which uses a lot of home-grown applications and services. Not only for authentication (and the simplified signon possibilities), but also for authorization, role management and fine-grained entitlement control.
Tools are just tools. Use the tool that does what you want at the price you're willing to pay and let others worry about the philosophical implications.
Labels: user centric
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