DiSo ideas are not that new.

Reading these:

A Perfect Storm Forming for Distributed Social Networking– Read Write Web

Evolution of Blogging – GigaOm

The Push Button Web – Anil Dash

The inside Out Social Network – Chris Messina

The Future Social Web – Jeremiah Owyang

I realize how incredibly ahead of the times I was along with many of the people I have been working with on open standards identity and social web standards.

I wrote this describing open standards for distributed social networking online in April of 2004f or the Planetwork Conference (from Archive.org)  that I was promoting.

———————— From Archive.org April 2004 ——————

ID Commons: Social Networking For Social Good: Creating Community Trust Infrastructure Through An Identity Commons

In 2003 the Planetwork LinkTank white paper The Augmented Social Network: Building Identity and Trust into the Next-Generation Internet proposed weaving new layers of identity and trust into the fabric of the Internet to facilitate social networking for social good – online citizenship for the information age.

The LinkTank white paper outlined three main objectives:

  1. Establishing a new kind of persistent online identity that supports the public commons and the values of civil society.
  2. Enhancing the ability of citizens to form relationships and self-organize around shared interests in communities of practice and engage in democratic governance.
  3. Creating an Internet-wide system for more efficient and effective knowledge sharing between people across institutional, geographic, and social boundaries.

Currently each site with a login or membership profile is like an island, or at worst a walled castle, as no common inter-operation is possible among large numbers of them. Creating a truly interoperable network will require an explicit social agreement that governs the operation of the trusted network, and implementation of a new software protocol consistent with that agreement.

Identity Commons

[note this is a reference to the “first” Identity Commons – the current Identity Commons shares the values and some of the organizing principles of this first organization but evolved from it]

The Identity Commons is an open distributive membership organization, designed to develop and operate a common digital identity infrastructure standard based on the shared principle of protecting each user’s control of their own identity data. A common identity infrastructure must be embedded within a binding social agreement ensuring that the technology and its institutional users operate in accordance with core principles. In addition to developing this agreement, Identity Commons is managing the development and implementation of the new technology needed to achieve this as a fiscal project of Planetwork, a California 501(c)3 non-profit.

The Identity Commons is based on an implementation of two new OASIS standards:

XRI – a new identity addressing scheme fully compatible with URIs
XDI – specifies link contracts for shared use of data across the Internet

For more technical information see: http://xrixdi.idcommons.net

Once implemented, the Identity Commons infrastructure will:

  • Give individuals, organizations, and even ad-hoc groups persistent addresses (digital identities) that can be used in many ways. Each party can decide what their own address links to, and who can follow the links.
  • Provide single sign-on, enabling individuals to connect to multiple sites without having to provide a login and password to each.
  • Empower user/citizens to manage their own consolidated profiles, which will be likely to stay up to date as everyone maintains only their own master copy.
  • Generate network maps that enable communities to more efficiently understand their own membership, make connections, recognize patterns, filter messages, and self-organize around new topics and functions.
  • Provide collaborative filtering services based on knowledge and reputation databases where contributors can also control their own level of anonymity.
  • Enable group formation around common interests and affinities with reputation attributes for trusted communication, which could be the key to eliminate spam.

How is this different from what is already happening in the private sector?

Currently every web site has a privacy policy, but they vary widely, are rarely read, are only good until they are changed and are thus effectively useless.

The Identity Commons (IC) solves this by (1) replacing thousands of privacy policies with a single institutional membership agreement that simplifies the user experience. Every Identity Commons member site is party to a legally binding commitment that can only be changed by amending the IC membership agreement – which is governed by all IC members. And (2) by using electronic contracts to grant, record, and enforce data sharing across boundaries.

Ultimately there can only be one fully interoperable social network; just as email can travel anywhere on the Internet, your profile must also be able to do so. Microsoft would love to make this possible, and fully control it – their Passport system was designed to do just that. By hosting identity data for nearly everyone who has a computer Microsoft hopes to put themselves in the middle of every transaction they can.

In response to this, a group of large companies formed the Liberty Alliance which developed protocols that will allow institutions to “federate” data across company boundaries. Federation is an improvement over the Microsoft Passport model, however, both of these approaches treat individuals solely as consumers, and neither provide support for civil society, citizen collaboration or for individual citizens to control their own identity data.

The Identity Commons agreement and technical infrastructure is a way to correct this imbalance of power, allowing the Internet to fulfill its great potential as a “commons” in which individual citizens can interact freely and as equals everywhere on Earth.

————- end Identity Commons description from Planetwork’s 2004 site ———

Writing this document was the first work that I did as an evangelist for the proposed open standards for distributed digital identity to enable open distributed social networks.
I wrote it based on reading through all their work and listening to their vision of the founders of Identity Commons and those working together for 2+ years hoped for in the adoption of the open standards they were working on. These protocols are now all ratified in OASIS (one of three standards bodies for the internet the other two being IETF and W3C) – XRI, XDI along with XRD/XRD that spun out of XRI as it became incorporated in OpenIDv2 as a key part of what makes it work.

Identity that is user owned, controlled managed – and this includes the preferences, attention data, uterances, 1/2 of transaction data – is at the heart of what one needs to make this vision of distributed social networking work. I think until recently it has been misunderstood as esoteric and just talk – amazing progress has been made since the early days of the identity gang that community has grown and developed many of the conceptual understandings and protocols that are taken as givens.

Folks from what the identity community (and perhaps should consider “updating” its name to the identity and social web community).…invented – as in used for the first time these two words together Social and Web – SOCIAL WEB – (according to wikipedia)

With the title of this paper: The Social Web: Creating An Open Social Network with XDI

This paper was preceeded by the Augmented Social Network: Building and Trust into the Next Generation Internet

Like the Web or email, the ASN would be available to anyone. It would become a common part of the Internet infrastructure – a person-centered and group-centered service of the net. It will be implemented through the widespread adoption of technical protocols; any online community infrastructure could choose to be part of the ASN by implementing them. Central to its design are fundamental principles of openness, inclusivity, and decentralization — which are necessary for a thriving democracy. At the same time, the ASN would support the highest available forms of security to protect privacy.

The Identity Gang began talking/meeting in the later part 2004 and has continued to meet in the Internet Identity Workshop.

There is much wisdom that these communities have developed that can be useful in moving / re-articulating the vision… to be sure lessons are to be learned from understanding more about why certain approaches/standards/proposed ways of doing things didn’t happen (yet).

I think the market wasn’t ready for what the identity community was saying. As someone who has been evangelizing about this set of issues practically full time since 2004. In the first few years I would talk in a range of communities and at conferences about all these issues, user control, open standards the danger of the potential emergence of large silo’s that locked users in and people just “didn’t get” it was an issue or that there was even a need for these kinds of standards. Now the market is finally ready.

The 9th Internet Identity Workshop  is this November – and REGISTRATION IS OPEN!

There is a whole conversation on the DiSo list where I highlighted this context/history. There might be a beer meetup in Berkeley this evening at Triple Rock at 7:30.

Identity at Earthday Digital Be-IN

There is a lot of activity happening. I wanted to let you all know about the Earth Day Digital Be-In happening on April 22 at SOMARTS in San Francsico (934 Brannon).

It is going to be a wonderful event that moves from a Networking social hour put on by the Urban Alliance for Sustainability to the Planet Code Symposium that Planetwork and imaginify pulled together into an evening of Eco-Activiation – transformative art music and inspiring speakers. There will be a Green Frontier Exhibition with number of green and sustainable projects presenting their work in an exhibit. Join us in a true fusion of Northern California culture, art and technology.

Here is a video that gives you some sense of the groove of the day.

5-6 Networking Salon hosted by San Francisco Alliance for Urban Sustainability

6pm – 8pm The Planet Code Symposium with several panels.
http://www.be-in.com/symposium.html (updates posted here)
Panels on Digital, Organic and Integral Solutions.

Speakers include:
Jim Fournier, Eprida; Karri Winn, Planetwork; Kaliya Hamlin, Identity Woman; Jair, imaginify; Marc Kasky, co-founder Green Century Institute; “Redwood Mary” Kaczorowski, United Nations; Melinda Kramer, Women’s Global Green Action Network; Greg Steltenpohl, Interra Project; Eric Sundelof, Stanford Digital Visions Program; Rick Tarnas, California Institute of Integral Studies; author, Psyche and Cosmos; John Clippinger, Berkman Center at Harvard Law School; David Ulansey, Mass Extinction Network Awareness; Randy Hayes, Rainforest Action Network, Oakland Sustainability Director; Gavin Newsom, Urban Environmental Accords ; Chris Deckker, Earthdance; Erik Davis, Evolver Project

Performances form 8pm on include:
Live performers: LunaGroove, Foxgluv, Irina Mikhailova, Waterjuice, Living Alliance of Love, hands upon black earth, Artemis, Divasonic, 1000%, Random Rab
DJ’s Cybervixen, Dov, Goz, KJ, Kode IV, Maximillian, Mozaic, Neptune, Shawna & Laura
Performance and Dance: Dreamtime Awakened – directed by, Davin S, Mystic Family Circus, Estara, Décor, Anon Salon, Trinity – Sacred Space Altars, Sacred Treasure House

Green Frontier Exhibition
Formerly known as the Digital Frontier, this edition of the Be-In will feature the “Green Frontier” – emphasizing the new initiatives, projects and products that are leading the way to a green economy and sustainable culture. In addition to paid sponsor exhibits, the Be-In each year invites a range of groups whose causes or products are worthy of broader exposure. The Green Frontier is a lively forum where leading technology creators can meet and exchange ideas with sophisticated users and professionals. It is also a place to expose forward-thinking ideas and initiatives to a community that is in the business of changing the world through evolutionary technology and social innovations. The Digital Be-In is well known as a catalyst to influence trends, spawn important ideas, create alliances, and showcase creative possibilities. The Green Frontier—at the event and on the ongoing Be-In websites—is where the tribes gather and connect.

Meet space technology improvement for etech and other ‘traditional’ conferences

Ao the physical space situation here at etech is horrible. The rooms are too small – it is not only sold out but over sold. We are sitting in the isles and standing 2 deep at the back of the room. Here is a summary of the current issues and some potential solutions.

Venues – flexible support for interaction:
It seems there is a real market for innovative collaborative community meet space. With the emergence of camps and unconferences what are the space that can support these events. The space where we meet – like the nowhere store was.

Accommodations – We need integrated diversity:
I am staying the youth hostel (it is the nicest one I have ever been in). Because for this event I want a nice bed to sleep in and I don’t care if I need to share with others. I am paying $72 for three nights (they make $96 if they sell out my 4 bed room). Some want the kind of accommodations that cost $300-$500 a night. How can you have those market nees and everything in between near by.

Food – good food reasonable cost:
How can you feed people good food for low cost. I think most coming to a conference would be able to afford about $10 a meal. Presentation doesn’t matter really the food does. This is what we paid for food at the internet identity workshop – people loved both lunches.

Hotels are making a lot of money right now off conferences – charging a lot per day for people to attend an event and be fed.
Carpooling – How do we get there?:
There are some sides that do this like space share but it is not totally easy to do yet and you have to re-enter a profile all the time. How do I put out a carpool request on my blog that will get circulated to the people who are also traveling from my area and might be driving. How can this be managed in ways that don’t overwhelm everyone with my request but just those who might help.

Process – What are the processes we use when we gather?:
The submit, committee select, present model is a bit stale. I have gone to three talks this afternoon and keep thinking tell me something I don’t know yet. If you are going to present get to the point. I am a big believer in the short presentation – we use them at planetwork 5-10 min. Go through your concepts faster cause I get what you are saying.

Some things deserve the full attention of the whole group but only about 1/10th of what they make us give our full attention to.

Examples of this would be Bruce’s talk last night but – give him a lot of time because he has a reputation of killer talks that are engaging. Folks were not doing their e-mail during it they were listening. This morning it was the light table interaction demo (it was super amazing) the there was no typing. As well Linda Stone’s insightful talk about what was coming next after Continuous Partial Attention. Basically she said ‘analogue’ is the new ‘digital’ as jair would say.

There is open space technology, speed geeking, appreciative inquiry lots of different change processes [see Change Handbook]

Ambient Findablity of people:
(I am writing this post in the Ambient Findability presentation)
Help me find the people in this stack of 1,300+ folks that I want to meet and talk to. Who has identity problems that I can help people find the resources in our community? Who is working on socially good tech stuff that would love to know about Planetwork? Can applications like attendr and Hallway help? Can we get investment in these open source tools – if you want you can use the something like $10,000 + $10 a head intronetworks (that I get to use it for PCForum.) That is not accessible.

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Last week – Identity Talks reach 60 folks :)

I had the opportunity to share about identity twice this week. We had an 2 hour + session at the OpenCMS Summit and then at MooseCamp. There is a lot going on in the community and a bunch of resources. Folks who have not heard about this space before they feel a bit fire hosed by it all.

Here are the links.
Who is Kaliya?
I got into all this tech stuff to server my community and still work on that at Integrative Activism http://www.integrativeactivism.net

I learned about technology at Planetwork and today serve as the Network Director there http://www.planetwork.net

I started working in identity as the evangelist for Identity Commons http://www.identitycommons.net about a year ago I became Identity Woman http://www.identitywoman.net

Wikipedia entry on Digital Identity http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_Identity

Identity Gang home of the Identity Lexicon http://www.identitygang.org/
(join the list..contribute to the wiki)

Internet Identity Workshop http://www.socialtext.net/iiw2005
(come to the next one in early May)

Microsoft InfoCards…
What are they?…http://blogs.msdn.com/alexbarn/archive/2004/11/07/253526.aspx

Kim’s the high integrity guy from Microsoft helping this whole space forward. http://www.identityblog.com
(I forgot to mention it but the laws of identity are there)

Identity and the enterprise
Liberty Alliance http://www.projectliberty.org/
SAML http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SAML

Stand alone URL based Identifiers (sxip 2.0 forth coming soon)
SXIP http://www.sxip.com

Cooperating on YADIS

1) Open ID invented by Live Journal Founder Brad Fitzpatrick.

2) Lightweight Identity

3) XRI / I-names

Sharing Information:
XRI Data Interchange

Here is a link to the PDF of my slides for those of you who asked. http://www.kaliyasblogs.net/OpenStandards.pdf

Eve Maler – XMLGrrl has a great post about the panel she and I were on Thursday – The long Identity Tail.

The workshop on i-names (well described)

Invitation to learn more i-names and datasharing using XRI and XDI by Andy Dale on the afternoon of Monday December 5th.
Who will find this workshop useful?
Those who want to have data from web-based applications (i.e. transaction processing, membership management) as well as basic forms (i.e. registration, surveys, etc.) integrate automatically with the back-end databases.  Â

Those creating an ecologies of services where users move between different sites regularly, where having a smoother user experience would serve everyone.  Web 2.0 companies.Â

The audience for this is ‘product managers’ and execs from the dozens of  the dozens of membership management software vendors, etc.  and those who want to do interoperability between various systems.Â

Augmented Social Network is the visionary paper that grounds a lot of this work.  Excerpts from the paper are on my blog here.
What will you learn about?
You will learn what they can do now and the schedule for the next pieces of the infrastructure being ready. Free i-names will be discussed and the type of functionality they can start to provide people with i-names that no other technology will give them.

A picture will be painted of the functional revolution that occurs when people aggregate their own data under their own control and how that lets any service provider give better service.

People will leave the workshop with an understanding that they can start to implement “Identity Centric Architecture” today and how that will benefit them and their members/customers.

FREE! (because we love you and want to offer a barrier free opportunity to learn more and join the community of implementors in a face-to-face way). All you have to do is RSVP to Justine [ justine.hirsch [AT]ootao [Dot] comjustine.hirsch [AT]ootao [Dot] com] and come.

It will be at ooTao’s offices in Alameda. 3rd Floor, 1080 Marina Village Parkway. Right across the bridge from Oakland

Who is Andy?
Andy builds enterprise software and within the last 8 months has been working on building enterprise quality applications using these tools. He articulates these standards with amazing clarity drawing on his real experience implementing them.

Who else is behind this event?
Kaliya Hamlin the Network Director at Planetwork is helping organize the event. She writes the Identity Woman Blog and works with companies in the XRI/XDI ecology. She is happy to answer questions about the field at =Kaliya

This agenda and address is on the wiki and will be updated.
Please go to the wiki and share – who you are – why you are coming; your use cases; what you want to learn and how this 3 hours can be of most benefit to you.

There are 3 basic levels of integration, or engagement, that are possible with the evolving social and dataweb standards:
• Single Sign On
• Publish data from your system
• Consume Data Shared from other systems

We will explore these implementations in detail by reviewing these 3 use cases:Signing in using Single Sign on:
This use case will let us set the landscape of the basic i-name infrastructure; i-brokers, service providers, xri resolution and yadis resolution.

Publishing data from a system:
Giving someone that donates money on-line a signed record of their gift.
This use case demonstrates publishing data from a system. The data is provided to the userso that they can share it with other systems as they see fit . This shows basic XDI syntax and permissioning.

Getting email addresses from a user’s XDI profile:
This case demonstrates how to either use your existing database as an XDI cache or make XDI calls in place of conventional SQL calls.

Date: Monday December 5, 2005
Time: 12 Noon (Bring your own lunch)
Program: 1pm
Venue: ooTao, Training Room, 3rd Floor, 1080 Marina Village Parkway, Alameda, CA 94501
Leader: Andy Dale author of the Tao of XDI and founder of ooTao (Object Oriented Tao)

Please contact Justine Hirsch (justine.hirsch [AT] ootao [dot] com) to register for this event. Places are limited so book early to avoid disappointment.

December Five Dive into i-names and Datasharing with Andy Dale “Mr. XDI”

On Monday December 5th in the afternoon Andy Dale is leading “deep dive” into i-names and datasharing using XRI and XDI.

The Goal
The goal is to explain the technical aspects of XRI and XDI to potential techincal implementors of these open standards. Supporting single sign on, doing basic datasharing and other key elements like i-brokers. He will do this by articulating practical applications that he and others are building (See below). You will get to connect with others exploring using these standards and share information with them.

Who is Andy?
Andy builds enterprise software and within the last 8 months has been working on building enterprise quality applications using these tools. He articulates these standards with amazing clarity and has real experience.

The event begins at noon with “bring your own lunch” and the program will begin at 1 pm.


It will be at ooTao’s offices in Alameda. 3rd Floor, 1080 Marina Village Parkway.

FREE! (because we love you and want to offer a barrier free opportunity to learn more and join the community of implementors in a face-to-face way). All you have to do is RSVP to Justine [ justine.hirsch *at* ootao *dot* com] and come.

This agenda and address is on the wiki and will be updated. Please go there and ad more about what you want to learn and how this 3 hours can be of most benefit to you.

There are 3 basic levels of integration, or engagement, that are possible with the evolving social and dataweb standards:

  • Single Sign On
  • Publish data from your system
  • Consume Data Shared from other systems

We will explore these implementations in detail by reviewing these 3 use cases:

Signing in using Single Sign on:
This use case will let us set the landscape of the basic i-name infrastructure; i-brokers, service providers, xri resolution and yadis resolution.

Publishing data from a system:
Giving someone that donates money on-line a signed record of their gift.
This use case demonstrates publishing data from a system. The data is provided to the userso that they can share it with other systems as they see fit . This shows basic XDI syntax and permissioning.

Getting email addresses from a user’s XDI profile:
This case demonstrates how to either use your existing database as an XDI cache or make XDI calls in place of conventional SQL calls.

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on a business panel

In about an hour I will be up on stage at the Symposium on Social Architecture talking about the future of business and social software. In a way I am a perfect example of how these new tools have shaped a work life. I have had limited experience working in offices – those I did work in were tiny dysfunctional nonprofits. I got into social software to address the challenges these organizations have supporting their members staying connected after they met in person. Researching what I needed to know to build tools for my community I read the Augmented Social Network: Building Trust and Identity into the Next Generation Internet. It was hugely influential on my thinking and totally inspired me. I have been working since reading it to share its ideas and work for its manifestation.

I have been working “virtually” for three years using social software tools – basically via e-mail, wiki’s, conference calls, in person meetings and showing up at events/conferences. Both on behalf of Planetwork and as Identity Woman working for the ecology of folks using eXtensible Resource Identifiers [XRI] (i-names) and and XRI Data Interchange [XDI] to really build the Augmented Social Network.

The ASN paper has a focus on civil society uses of the internet. The principles of user controlled identity are at its core and have implications for business and how trusted deep relationships between buyers and sellers, costumers and companies can open up new opportunities. Here are some critical excerpts

Four main elements of ASNPersistent Identity
Enabling individuals online to maintain a persistent identity as they move between different Internet communities, and to have personal control over that identity. This identity should be multifarious and ambiguous (as identity is in life itself), capable of reflecting an endless variety of interests, needs, desires, and relationships. It should not be reduced to a recitation of our purchase preferences, since who we are can not be reduced to what we buy.

Interoperability Between Online Communities
People should be able to cross easily between online communities under narrowly defined circumstances, just as in life we can move from one social network to another. Protocols and standards need to be developed and adopted to enable this interoperability. This interoperability should include the ability to identify and contact others with shared affinities or complementary capabilities, and to share digital media with them, enabling valuable information to pass from one online community to the next in an efficient manner. To support ASN-type activity, modularized enhancements to the technical infrastructures of separate online communities will need to be developed and adopted.

Brokered Relationships
Using databased information, online brokers (both automated and “live”) should be able to facilitate the introduction between people who share affinities and/or complementary capabilities and are seeking to make connections. In this manner, the proverbial “six degrees of separation” can be collapsed to one, two or three degrees — in a way that is both effective and that respects privacy. Such a system of brokered relationships should also enable people to find information or media that is of interest to them, through the recommendations of trusted third parties.

Public Interest Matching Technologies
The Semantic Web is perhaps the best known effort to create a global “dictionary” of shared terms to facilitate finding information online that is of interest to you. Within the ASN, a public interest initiative around matching technologies, including ontologies and taxonomies, will enable you to find other people with whom you share affinities — no matter which online communities they belong to. These matching technologies need to be broad and robust enough to include the full range of political discussion about issues of public interest. They should not be confined to commercial or narrowly academic topics; NGOs and other public interest entities need to be represented in the process that determines these matching technologies.


Building your online identity
Underlying this report is the assumption that every individual ought to have the right to control his or her own online identity. You should be able to decide what information about yourself is collected as part of your digital profile, and of that information, who has access to different aspects of it. Certainly, you should be able to read the complete contents of your own digital profile at any time. An online identity should be maintained as a capability that gives the user many forms of control. Without flexible access and control, trust in the system of federated network identity will be minimal.

To date, online identity is treated the same way as an individual’s credit history — as information that exists as a result of commercial transactions, and so is the proprietary data of the company that captures it. These companies then have the legal right to do with this data as they see fit, including making it available to massive databases that centralize this information for resale. At the same time, your rights as a citizen to access and effect this same information are limited — as anyone who has ever had to sort out errors in his official credit history can attest.

A digital profile is not treated as the formal extension of the person it represents. But if this crucial data about you is not owned by you, what right do you have to manage its use? At the moment, it seems, this right would have to be granted by the corporations that have captured your data for their own purposes. They may perhaps choose to give you a measure of control over what they do with it. But as long it is their choice to grant you control, rather than your right as a citizen to assert control, the potential for abuse is of grave concern. Just as overly burdensome intellectual property laws threaten to dampen innovation on the Internet, as Lawrence Lessig has described, legacy twentieth century laws regarding proprietary information about “customers” could undermine efforts to create a civil society-oriented persistent identity. This could, in turn, strictly limit the forms of trusted relationships that might take place online.

The digital profiles that Internet stores like Amazon have developed of their customers follow a common pattern. Have you ever seen the information about your sales history that Amazon bases its personal recommendations on? Not to suggest that Amazon is a nefarious organization, or that it uses what it learns about customers in an improper way. But you cannot gain access to your Amazon profile, even if you wanted to. Nor do you even have the right to ask for it. Today, for most people, this does not pose a problem. Most of us are glad to get Amazon’s recommendations (sometimes they are even useful). But a decade hence, as the tools for creating online profiles become far more sophisticated, and stores like Amazon cross-reference their proprietary customer information with that of thousands of other companies, we will be in a very different territory.

Let’s take a moment to consider the ways that data about you can be gathered and entered into a digital profile. There are basically three:

First, as with the Amazon example, your online decisions can be traced, entered into a database, and interpreted according to a pre-determined algorithm. This form of automated information gathering, by compiling a database of significant actions, is the most unobtrusive way to build a profile. At the same time, you — the profile subject — may be unaware that your actions are being followed and interpreted in this way. It is important that ethical standards are established so that you know when your behavior is being tracked, and when it isn’t. Moreover, you should be aware who is tracking your behavior, and what they will do with that information. Most importantly, you should always be given the option to not have your behavior tracked — this option should be a fundamental right in a free society. By tracked we mean the recording and retention of activity that is retained beyond a certain time limit, transferred to others, and/or retained for future use.

Secondly, you can deliberately enter information about yourself into a digital profile. For example, some online communities have complex registration forms that each new member must fill out in order to participate. Once a member makes clear that she prefers Bob Dylan and Tom Waits to N’Synch and Britiney Spears, she is then led into an online discussion area with others who expressed similar interests. The advantage to profiles compiled like this is that you know exactly what you have chosen to express about yourself, and what you have not. The downside, however, is that filling out forms is cumbersome; most of us prefer to avoid doing it.

The third method is perhaps the most traditional form of information gathering, and least preferred: Having others report on your actions without your knowledge. Depending on who controls your digital profile, and how it is used, this method might play a minimal role in federated network identity, or it might be central to it. The more control each individual has over his or her own profile, however, the less likely it is that undesirable or unnecessary reports by others will be a key element. A user should have some ability to determine under what circumstances other people’s opinions about his actions might precede him when he enters new situations.

Again, ethical standards need to be agreed to that protect citizens against abuses of this kind, which the technology could easily facilitate.

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I spent all day today and will spend all day tomorrow at the Green Festival Collaboration Hub. It has been great fun talking to folks about the work that Planetwork is doing – expanding to 10 cities.

We have a whole group of folks working on the Virtual Civil Society. If you are in the Bay Area it is worth the trip. I had a blast buying professional looking organic cloths.

Here are pictures from today.
Jim is speaking to a packed audience about Eprida (a really cool carbon sequestration technology basically it pulls CO2 out of the atmosphere, makes fuel and fertilizer) there is an article coming out shortly in Scientific America soon. Watch the flash movie to get it.

Leaving the festival there was an ExtraCycle street party – Extracycle is a cool addendum to mountain bikes that make them Sports Utility Bikes (SUB’s). They had one set up with a Blender on the back. And a whole bike embedded sound system pumping away. They are Dancing in the middle. Who needs a hummer?

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Emerging Understanding Swarms & other cool stuff at DorkBot SF

On Wednesday Night I attended my first DorkBotSan Francisco. It was great to be in a room full of cool geeks.

Mark Pesce also spoke about evolutions happening in swarming.

Informational Swarms are the most efficient way to get the most information to the most people.

Knowledge Swarms [ Information + Context] Wikipedia is the example where everyone contributes a little bit. It is the ‘black hole of human knowledge’ and as we all contribute a little be we all are invested in it.

Understanding Swarms [Knowledge + Experience] What we can tell each other. Looking ahead being able to google your friends (ahh here is where persistent identity shows up!)

Spot Draves presented the lastest with Electric Sheep.
Jon Philips presented on how to build an online community. The key was having three things:

• 1 mailing list
• 1 wiki and
• 1 IRC channel

Eric Davis (a founder of Planetwork)
Spoke a bit about the network power to interlink machines and amplify human knowledge. He introduced Make Magazine and spoke to the form of magazine – the inter linking of word and image.
The folks from from Make Magazine were fantastic too. I love that magazine. I read it cover to cover when it comes out. Sitting there listening to me I reflected back…emembering my days in electronics class back in grade 9…and realizing that I have been inclined towards technology for a while. Perhaps I will get up the courage to build something from it soon.

Interestingly enough it is breaking all the rules for that business – with a sell through rate of 50-75% (normally 20% or less) and having back issues in the book section. They thought of it as a Mook (a book / magazine format invented in Japan). They also have only 12 pages of ads in 160 pages of space. Their circulation is 3.5 times larger then they expected it would be by this time at 35,000.

Then there was some ‘open-dorking’. I will go back but overall it was a bit frustrating because the evening felt over programmed. Once the room broke for drinks and sociallizing it would have been good energetically to let it continue. It is one of those process things that all communities encounter as they bring people together.

I Drupal and Flocking

The first day of OSCON05 was great.
I had a meeting with a potential client for Integrative Activism in the morning went to downtown and picked up more business cards and headed to the Airport.

I had an identity ‘incident’ after making it through security. I went to add minutes to my phone and some how got popped out to a personal operated. She REQUIRED the last four digits of my SSN so they could ‘verify’ my identity by pulling information for the cloud to determine I am me. They would have the service that does this call me within the hour to ask me questions. This happened the last time I went to put money on this phone. It is quite disconcerting. Luckly this time I canceled the order and managed to make it through just ‘touch’ tone and get it minuets on my phone.

I took a cab from the airport to Drupal Con and make a great short presentation about i-names It was a big moment- I got to show it really working with the Identity Commons News Blog and Planetwork. I also showed my Integrative Activism’s first CS/Drupal – for spiritual activist leaders. I also showed them some of the most graphically stunning Drupal sites ever build byCivicActions – Open Network.TV and Shift in Action for IONS.

Then I headed over to the Flocking Party. Flock is a new Mozilla based social web browser. Hopefully the identity stuff we have been working on is applicable.

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Identity Hub Announced and other fun stuff

Marc Canter had a great week at Always On. The Identity Hub took a step forward with the announcement of the GoingOn Network.

(I didn’t make it :( because I was hanging out with the Spiritual Activists in a different part of the Bay Area looking for clients for Integrative Activism.)
I got to hang out at the WordPress partyon Sunday evening and some of the folks were nerding out on Microformats that seem like a key part of the weaving the social web.

I have a busy week coming up with Tag Tuesday tomorrow night. Eugene Kim and Zack at SDForum and then Planetwork Thursday on Identity



Thursady, July 28th doors at 6, program at 7
CIIS, Namaste Hall,3rd Floor
1453 Mission St. San Francisco (2 blocks from Civic Center BART)

With my emerging persona as Identity Woman curated this line up that provides a great opportunity to learn more about some of the latest tools for next generation digital identity.

Light Weight Identity – LID
Johannes Ernst NetMesh Inc. .
Light-Weight Identity(tm)– LID(tm)– a new and very simple digital identity protocol that puts users in control of their own digital identities, without reliance on a centralized party and without approval from an “identity provider”.

Brad Fitzpatrick Six Apart, Ltd.
OpenID, a decentralized identity system, but one that’s actually decentralized and doesn’t entirely crumble if one company turns evil or goes out of business. An OpenID identity is just a URL.

Sun Single Sign On
Pat Patterson Sun Microsystems
Sun is announcing the intention to open source web single sign-on. This project, called Open Web Single Sign-On, or OpenSSO, gives developers access to the source code to these basic identity services allows them to focus on innovations that solve more urgent problems, such as securely connecting partner networks, ensuring user privacy, and proving compliance.

Opinity, Inc
Ted Cho
Opinity provides open reputation for end users. It is a young start up offering free online reputation management related services so that individuals can authenticate, aggregate, and mobilize their website (eBay, Amazon, etc.) reputations. Opinity also offers reputation management tools so that individuals can monitor, build, and work to enhance their own reputation going forward. Individuals can also review other individuals at the Opinity website.
Planetwork has been hosting monthly networking forums in the Bay Area for the last 3 years. We are a unique network sitting at the nexus of technology use for social and environmental good. To support the monthly forums we invite voluntary donations (in a basket on the food table).

If you would like to join our mailing list to get more information about upcoming events please go to this page and get a planetwork i-name and then set your mail preferences.

Farming the Net or the Earth??

Farmers in third world countries leaving the land to ‘farm’ for gold in online games to sell to other avatars (digital identities of a type). The virtual ‘sweatshop labour’. I hope the college activists turn there attention to this issue too.

Net heads may think this is cool and those enamored with the over taking of the real world with the digital. I think it is really freaking and we should figure out how to pay people who farm the land get paid well. We can not as Bruce Sterling so aptly put in his Planetwork 2000 address – dive into our computer screens and survive. He was talking about escaping from the greenhouse effect – seems like having food to eat is equally applicable.

The lesson here is not that atomic scientists are gutless eggheads. Einstein and Sakharov weren’t gutless: these people are colleagues of Einstein and Sakharov. The true lesson of Los Alamos is that there’s no ivory tower to hide in. You can have the biggest supercomputers on earth and a broadband video feed. If a Greenhouse monsoon rolls in, you’re gonna have live video feed of your supercomputers washing downriver.

What are you gonna do when the sky turns black over your town? Are you gonna jump inside your laptop screen? Where you gonna hide, console cowboy? If it gets hotter, you can click up the AC like we do in Texas, but the Greenhouse Effect is an extremely intimate disaster. You’re breathing it right now. The planet’s entire atmosphere from pole to pole has been soiled with effluent from smokestacks. Too much carbon dioxide. It’s in every single breath you take, it fills this very room. You don’t get to pick and choose. There’s no pull-down menu for another atmosphere. The sky is full of soot. Everywhere. There’s soot in Yosemite. There’s soot at the source of the Nile. There’s soot in Walden Pond and soot in the Serengeti. There is no refuge. It’s not imaginary, it’s here.

Yet it’s nothing compared to what is coming. Whatever sins of omission and comission we may have committed environmentally, they are the small ones, they are the beginner steps. Look at the curves, do some of the math. We’re in deep already, but these are just harbingers. The real trouble lies ahead.