Exploring Identity

I have been playing with various technologies like openID for the past few days. If you look to the right in the sidebar you will see a link to a couple of things. The “Contact Me” is an iName link to a Contact page. This helps reduce spam since the contact page is a web form. iNames also help provide an abstraction layer on URLs. So if you want to link to your blog you might use http://xri.net/=starcher/(+blog) then if you ever move your blog from one web hosting service to another you just update the iName forwarding and everywhere you posted your link the readers can still find you.

Below that you will see the link to my claimID page. ClaimID is where you pull together all various pieces of your online identity. Everything from web page links related to you, email addresses and openID providers.

openID is way to give you authentication and other services to sites that support openID. These are called openID consumers. Most likely you have an openID already and do not know it. If you use AOL IM or iChat then you have an openID URL you can use with OID consumers. You can check out my post on that over at Typical Mac User.

We are playing around with the wordpress plugin for openID. If we can we will be adding support to our various blogs of the Friends in Tech members.

Lastly I added a service called Grand Central when I got a beta invite from Victor over at Typical Mac user. It is also an abstracting layer like iName. But it lets you abstract your phone numbers. You pick a number out and then tell the service all your other phone numbers. This is great if you have to leave a number with someone while you travel. One number and they can reach you at any of several numbers you might be at.  You can even program in rules.  So family listed in the contact address book get forwarded to your cell phone while any other caller might go to voicemail.  It does this based on matching caller ID.