Perspectives: Understanding CardSpace with Vittorio Bertocci

The second installment of Perspectives is up, with Vittorio Bertocci, author of Understanding Windows CardSpace. This interview was recorded a few months ago, and has been waiting for the Perspectives site to launch. In January I excerpted the part about omnidirectional identity, a difficult phrase that I continue to struggle with. Maybe a better one is Internet persona: the social mask that you project when you self-publish online, and to which reputation attaches. Whatever we call this phenomenon, its Laws of Identity — not only for people, but also for digital object — are not yet well defined.

Most of the interview, though, concerns the existing “unidirectional” mechanisms supported by CardSpace. I asked Vittorio to relate those mechanisms to precursors like SSL client certificates and Kerberos, and also to the complementary OpenID system. As discussed in my ITConversations podcast with Dick Hardt, the principles that govern this identity machinery are abstract and, until we experience them firsthand, will be hard for most of us to grasp. But Vittorio does a good job of explaining those principles in terms of concrete examples.

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