The Social Networker

by Chris Miller at 02:56:20 PM on Saturday, March 29th, 2008
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I read a great blog post on OwnYourIdentity.com while sitting at the airport.  Many great comments followed the posting titled "A Journey of a Thousand Steps"

My mind starting racing around all the great ideas and comments.  However, to me there is that glaring hole.  Many people posted they don't care how their data syncs between services (bookmarking services were used as an example) or if they can export their Flickr photos if that site goes under and move them to Picasa.  The point isn't about synching or moving.  If we follow that path, we start with a small pod of information that another provider can grab and bring over into their systems. Now we have duplication of data and expect eh vendor to maintain the integrity and timing of the updates.  At any time, a vendor could decide to cut all ties and then you either move to a manual approach or dump one of them.  And the friends on that site with it.

Why aren't we treating the data as a blob, with limited (some basic rules) structure requirements, an open API to know how to get the blog and good user controlled security models?  From there, the developers of all these applications really give us a reason to utilize them.  They build a social networking site that accesses the blob and wraps cools tools and services.  Notice I did not say copies, takes or moves the blob.  Accesses.  You provide them with the proper access to what data you want that site to see from your blob and let them build.  I now know that I am storing my data one time, one place, one security base and when I update, everyone can get it in the way I want across services.

Forget updating 20 sites and then attempting to map blog posting into Tweets, Tweets in FriendFeed, photo into Flick, Flickr into Jaiku and Facebook and then all that into some widget on your blog once again.  What a mess.

So I think the word goes from DataPortability to DataStability or DataSittingInOnePlace

Update: Another blogger with an opinion

  • 1) Clearing the air on data ownership versus portability versus import/export
    Created by Dennis McDonald at 3/29/2008 4:17:48 PM email | website

    You seem to be asking that the public, voluntary, and near-free set of networks that is constantly evolving behave like a controlled behind-the-firewall set of integrated applications that has some sort of central governance. I'm not saying that's impossible, but you may be asking for developers to stop innovating, and that ain't gonna happen. Maybe we just need to learn to live with chaos?

  • 2) Clearing the air on data ownership versus portability versus import/export
    Created by Turtle at 3/29/2008 8:19:53 PM email | website

    Another thing is, DataSittingInOnePlace rapidly becomes DataAtRiskOfGettingBlownAwayIrretrievablyBecauseItWasOnlyInOnePlace.

    See also, "LNotes-L." One guy decides he doesn't wanna bother maintaining the oldest Notes-related mailing list in the world, and overnight, it and a good-sized portion of its archives and the entire subscriber list disappears. Some redundancy can be a very good mess.

  • 3) Clearing the air on data ownership versus portability versus import/export
    Created by Lars Olufsen at 3/30/2008 2:33:42 PM email | website

    It's you very own personal set of services in the world wide Service Oriented Architecture.

    Every sercive you 'connect' to must provide a standardize modelling tool, allowing you to map the providers interface with your 'blob'. Once this service 'connection' is mapped, it will be stored following a certain naming convention. 'Connections' are reusable with any other service provider supplying a known interface.

    I like the idea! There has to be some kind of iron-clad security model wrapped around it, and also a set of generic functionality like logging, audit trails and translation would be relevant.

    But could it survive the Big Brother scare?

  • 4) re: Clearing the air on data ownership versus portability versus import/export
    Created by Chris Miller at 3/30/2008 4:05:42 PM email | website

    @Dennnis - Actually I am not asking them to stop innovating. Quite the opposite. Focus only on innovating and stop worrying avout gathering all the data. Use the data that is made available and make new, exciting, innovative tools that make users want to use your service or site without data recreation. Just a simple allowance of access

  • 5) re: Clearing the air on data ownership versus portability versus import/export
    Created by Chris Miller at 3/30/2008 4:07:29 PM email | website

    @Turtle - I know I shot you an email, but the the holder of this data source would be diligent about backup/restore/data intgegrity.

    P.S. I have the L-notesl archives from Lotus, they sent me a copy and I placed it publicly available.

  • 6) re: Clearing the air on data ownership versus portability versus import/export
    Created by Chris Miller at 3/30/2008 4:09:21 PM email | website

    @lars - big brother scare doesn't apply since everyone is already storing this data out there, just all over the place in so many sites it is getting ridiculous. The idea is to bring that part together and then follow the path you said. Glad you get it.

  • 7) Clearing the air on data ownership versus portability versus import/export
    Created by Lars Olufsen at 3/31/2008 1:04:38 PM email | website

    @Chris - I see you point.

    I do think, though, that the Big Brother scare is still possible. I know that the information is still out the, but it IS after all split between sites. This 'new' way of plugging into personal information would have all the date in one place, but not available for all that connect.

    Or am I wrong there? Should all the personal information be available to everybody, and just the mapping be customized.

  • 8) Clearing the air on data ownership versus portability versus import/export
    Created by Lars Olufsen at 3/31/2008 1:07:37 PM email | website

    ...I know that the information is still out THERE ...

    Deduct 1 point for not checking before posting!

    *sigh*

  • 9) Clearing the air on data ownership versus portability versus import/export
    Created by sofia at 4/6/2008 9:21:32 PM email |

    I wrote a post on this very same subject that you might find interesting { Link } .



Discussion for this entry is now closed. Please email me instead

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