Who am I?

The big coffee issue for me at the moment is identity.  Not just the big questions frappacino, cappa or Latte as I think I am a default Americano man.   But I believe there is a flaw with the Internet:  It does not know who I am?  In fact, to be more precise it knows that I am lots of different habits but not really who I am?

 Kim Cameron, Microsoft’s Chief Identity Architect, summed things up in a recent Garner interview. http://www.gartner.com/research/fellows/asset_187313_1176.jsp?RRFellows49 

As he explained, “Systems should be capable of responding to us as individuals and support interactions based on relationships. In order to do that, we have to know things about each other. Right now, we don’t even know who we’re talking to on the Web. The Web is missing its identity layer. How can we build relationships in a world where we don’t know who we are talking to? A lot of the Web 2.0 stuff is based on the notion of communities, relationships and an understanding of my individual preferences. A lot of people would like their personal information to be transportable and shareable. I’ve got information over here that I’d like to get over there, and by the way, I’d like you to be able to see my calendar. But who are you? I don’t know. Nobody has an identity. ”

<!– II.  The Future of Stock Exchanges

–>This problem might seem somewhat philosphical but with grand hopes we all have for the future of Internet then it may be a serious fly in the 2.0 ointment.   How can we create trust in virtual relationships if the system we are in does not know who we are and who we are building relationships around?  

So while all the talk of meta-identity systems might sound like Big Brother is it actually what is needed to enable trust?  Or put another way is the ability to identify and track individuals their actions, behaviours and habits the only basis to enforcing law and trusting relations?

I do think without some answers then the virtual life will be naturally limited and people will still need to meet in coffee shops and enjoyed printed gossip sheets.  In fact does this explain explain why bloggers are so relieved to meet in person and is there yet a word for the deja vu feeling of a face-to-face meeting between bloggers?

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