Archive for the ‘Mutual Data Ownership’ Category

Ownership and responsibility in Identity relationships

Monday, June 8th, 2009

So I guiltily admit I finally read Bob Blakley’s paper on Identity relationships today.  This is particularily neglect of me considering not only is Bob on my board of directors… but also a dear friend that I discuss these topics often with.   And of course I am in awe.  Bob is really good at laying out the reasoning for things I can only see intuitively.  We of course have had many discussions about the essential nature of relationships to identity.  Obviously I am biased because it is key to a Federation of Social Networks.  I mean what are social networks but a grouping of relationships!

But I would like to add an additional aspect here… that of ownership.  Because of those relationships, that data is never owned by one party or another.  That relationship data is the child of both (or multiple) entities.

With that ownership also comes responsibilities, for both parties and I think that is where the essential aspects of privacy become relevant and addressable. Most in this space think of those relationships as only being in the context of individuals… but I would argue the issues are the same in social network to social network sn2sn style relationships.  Especially since I envision purposely fragmenting social networks instead of people only using one or maybe two.  I actually would like to redefine CRM to include social nets that each can be a “lego” in the construction of a persona.  Rather similar to the new information card but with a more distributed flair rather than being centralized on a desktop application.

For example, say I want to do some documentation on the Transparent Federal Budget.  I would prove my validity by linking to various personas that show appropriate reputation such as the ACLU validating that I was a Legislative Liaison in Texas, that I was on the board of EFF-Austin, that I am currently on the board of TANO, and that I am the founder of the League of Technical Voters, and finally my LinkedIn profile that also has links to people I worked with.  These would hopefully illustrate to readers of my documentation that I am knowledgable in regards to technical issues while documenting those aspects in the Budget.

It would be up to me to create and update those personas.  I have a pretty good reason to manage those relationships with those org’s social nets now because they are part of my reputation.  So the key part is how to get people to be willing to do this in the first place… one key here is trust…

This is the big HINT HINT to businesses out there.  If you wanting to create a social net to help keep your CRM database up to date, this is the value you can give.  But even more than that – how to get customer to share is where relationships REQUIRE TRUST.  To get trust, you need to SHARE ownership of data.  True a business style social network will not get updated all the time but if you aggregate with others… people will have incentive to maintain that relationship. Look at the success of facebook apps.  Now dear business folks imagine not being beholden to one entity…

For example, I don’t go to Yelp everyday. But when I want to tell everyone about a neat restaurant,  I’ll do a review on yelp which then automatically puts it on my facebook and friendfeed.  That is an incentive to me.  It makes it really easy to tell evveryone and I don’t have to try and move all the info to yelp (which by the way I don’t own outright – remember it’s shared.)

It creates a responsibility for both individual and business to maintain the relationship.  It also creates a responsibility between businesses.  Yelp expects that facebook and friendfeed won’t “steal” data (since that data remember isn’t purely Yelp’s either.)  The interesting side effect I believe this could have… is it could become easier and more effective way to handle all this relationship data.   I easily see data brokers evolving…


Ownership of data

Thursday, June 4th, 2009

Rarely does one entity (person for simplification purposes) OWN data. Most data is relational or is only useful in the context of a relationship. So most data is owned by at least two parties.

Consider “friending” on a social network. That “friendship” is actually a child of your relationship. You have BOTH claimed it as true so therefore you BOTH own that “child.”

This makes relationship data and its ownership a complex but not impossible setup.

We just have to create a system that acknowledges that dual ownership.

This is difficult because people are used to “OWNing” traditional objects. I think the closest and most emotional analogy i can use is children. A blending of DNA, that is of both and of neither… does it deserve to live on it own?

To take things a step further… same with most data in your life. Who owns your banking data? you or the bank or the credit union or…

Who owns your credit card transactions?

Who owns your GPS information?

super simple – ultracomplex


Relative Reputation

Thursday, June 4th, 2009

firstoff – Reputation what is it?  and how do we as computer geeks – replicate it?

Wikipedia says basically – “Social evaluation of the public towards something used for social control”

What does this mean?  Well the main part that most in the tech industry seem to forget is that the “public” decides what your reputation is.  It is not a statistical average but instead a matrix of social interactions on a one to one level…  it is relative to your own set of criteria.  For example a cynic may have a very different base rating as an optimist.

I decide if you are “good at” dancing.  Now you might be an overall “okay” dancer but with me something special happens and you become a “better than okay” dancer.  I have a reputations as a “very good” follow.  So when I say that you are “good” rather than “okay” several follows will reevaluate your skills but in context of ME saying it.

If I regularly find leads to be better or if I have a different dancing style,  the other follower or followers may discount my rating.

So social does not simply mean an mathematical average.

It is specific to an instance in time with many factors.

I suppose to go back farther into what is reputation we have to look at trust

1) how one feels that day

2) your expertise on a specific topic

3) mine expertise on a specific topic

4) my belief in your expertise

oh and remember you do not OWN your reputation – the community does.  And the Community owns the data that creates your reputation too.  So you have an advantage in being transparent… but you give up ownership.

I find these days it is pretty rare when anyone actually “OWNS” their data.  Most things are built on work of others…  Sometimes I don’t even realize I am doing or thinking something emergent or derivative.

And friendship and reputation are created from the interactions btn at least 2 people.  Both of those people own that “child” that is the relationship or statement of friendship.  Facebook doesn’t…  Facebook owns the behaviors it monitors (oh and trust me they are monitoring else de be fools.)

oh well noodle noodle…


Something new? I don’t think so

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009

So here I am working on my Federated Social network concept for a presentation in DC next week. And Again I find I am not original…

See the way I do things is I come up with an idea and then I look for stuff to justify what I think “feels right.” Yea sorry it’s just how my backassward brain thinks.

Why do I do it – backwards? I am unknown and lack in reputation. So no one believes what I say unless I can prove it. So I cheat and use others reputation points to prove my concept :-)

So here I am falling in love with Feynman again. And As I am researching the concepts about my peer review process, I find some other amazing gems…

this equation makes me happier than I can ever explain!
PS_1 -> TT_1 -> EE_1 -> PS_2
“In response to a given problem situation (PS1), a number of competing conjectures, or tentative theories (TT), are systematically subjected to the most rigorous attempts at falsification possible. This process, error elimination (EE), performs a similar function for science that natural selection performs for biological evolution. Theories that better survive the process of refutation are not more true, but rather, more “fit”—in other words, more applicable to the problem situation at hand (PS1)”

an equation for evolution of ideas (and well evolution period)

which then leads me to and Tarski’s “semantic theory of truth”!

yea – my brain is happy and feeling validated…

now to work on my wallet


quantifying evil

Saturday, April 4th, 2009

Can you quantify evil or corruption?  is it an absolute number?  can it be a singular metric?

ummm no it can’t

we all have different values and perspectives.

What we might be able to do is quantify based on information given the chance or percentage you might think something or someone is corrupt or evil.

But really… this all come down to time and transparency.  If we give all the information and if you have the time/intellect does our stuff seem right to you?

or you could trust “experts” and perhaps also be “corrupted” by influence…

The reality of that transparency without “expertise” is actually useless and a form of overload.  For it to be useful, it must be interpreted… that means bias.  I prefer to know where my bias comes from.  I trust in bias :-)

I find it interesting in so many groups currently the end goal is transparency.  And for me transparency is simply a neccessary description of a process.  I do not find it to be good or evil simply necessary.

Why I decided to do Open Source code was not a question of morality.  It is a practical question.  If you want me to trust your code, I want to see it.  I want to know I have the ability to fix your mistake (even if honestly I might not be smart enough.)

The other business models out there are not “evil.”  They are what they are.  I just think with today’s online toolset and ability to crowdsource; they are outdated.  They require a different kind of trust.  That trust is “I paid you money I expect your software to work. ”  There is no evil there.  There is no evil in bartering.  You can walk away from a deal.  You can choose not to use a product.

evil I believe lies in purposeful deception…  and then um yea…


Microsoft’s outdated business model and how they can redeem themselves

Tuesday, March 31st, 2009

So I was talking the other day to Mark Hindsbo, the GM of Evangelists at Microsoft. He was basically wanted to talk about healing rifts with the OpenSource community. I was a bit blunt and brutal (but in a gentle way :-))

I said it is impossible for the OSS or FOSS communities to ever believe MS. I said the OSS shouldn’t and that MS should quit trying. The MS business model is broken in regards to OSS. The only way to change that trust is to change the business model.

The way to do that is focus on services. But maybe not services the way the FOSS community does…

I said if MS wants redemption it should look to the clouds…

hehehe or “the cloud.” One thing MS has always respected is the automony of its business clients and developers. I mean that is the point for such products as Small Business Server. Business clients are responsible for their own data and can act autonomously. This is NOT a stretch for people to believe in when it comes to MS’s reputation.

With the cloud’s current state, Data/autonomy is being taken away from people and businesses. Years ago I registered the URL when I realized this was happening.  Though understand,  I have a gmail address. I am as guilty as the rest. But, at least I understand the tradeoff of convenience to secrecy.

So what can MS do? instead of Open Source… they should give people back their data. On MS cloud, Azure, they should do it right. Charge for services. Encrypt the data so the Feds can’t raid MS to get YOUR company/ind data.

and here is the BIGGIE


Let people SEE the data can be gathered and decide if they want to SELL it back to you for “free” services. This will KILL google. When people realize the scary psychometric data being gathered and presented back to them ESP companies… I think they will find it worth while to pay for services.

I mean most companies don’t even realize that they void NDAs when using gmail addresses. Make that transparent to them. Create accountability.
This isn’t just about security… it is about another form of transparency and that is about data.

People as a whole don’t care about code… they care about themselves and their data is a reflection of that.

yea… sometimes I’m evil. But they loved me at the Microsoft VIP party at SXSW.

At the very least we will be able to check the anonymizing functions the data is being put through… and make up our own minds as to what monolith to support.

Personally this gal with a libertarian bent likes it better when the monoliths are fighting it out.


reputation and anonymity

Wednesday, February 4th, 2009

I don’t believe reputation and anonymity are mutually exclusive.

I believe as we get closer to quantifying relative reputation (because reputation is just as much your profile information merged w other profile information)  we will watch “reputation brokers” emerge.  People that will act as third party validation mechanisms.

I also believe that those 3rd party brokers if THEY have a good reputation with you can serve as anonymity brokers.  Such like reporters had to do in the day w their “sources”