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Open, to Some

Over on the YDN blog, our (brand spankin' new!) Open Standards Evangelist Eran has announced something cool. It's the First OAuth Summit and it's coming up quick.

This is a great event, tho' I'm a bit frustrated at the super-short lead time. Posted on June 13, announced on June 16 & held on June 26 = 10 day window. Hardly enough time for folks outside the Bay Area to: learn about the event; make plans/get permission to attend; and (forget about even tryin' to) get a decent advance rate on airfare. I'm just sayin' … this is how initiatives like OAuth get a bum rap as insular, Valley-only standards.

Hell, I work for Yahoo! (and it's no big secret that we're investing in Oauth.) We're hosting the event and I still won't be able to attend. 10 days' notice is fine when all you have to do is re-arrange a few meetings and hop down 101 from the Sunnyvale campus. But when you telecommute from Columbus? Um... what's that word I'm thinking of... 4 letters, starts with F— ... oh yeah: FAIL!

And… to make this somewhat less of a boo-hoo-Bryce session: a couple weeks back, I asked a local (Columbus) developer's list "Is anyone aware of OAuth? Any plans to implement it soon?" I'd specifically directed the question at devs in the finance sector, who I knew populated this particular list. (For those who aren't aware of it, Columbus is a big banking and insurance market. JPMorganChase, Nationwide Insurance and many others all do product development out of Columbus.) The scant response I got could generally be summarized as "heard of it… aware of it… no intentions to move to it." (My question was prompted by a tweet from Chris Messina that I thought was spot-on.)

Now, wouldn't a truly open OAuth Summit, with a decent amount of lead time (say… a month? 6 weeks? Could we do it in the Fall?) and… (gasp!) a travel-friendly location (I'm thinking Chicago, hell I'd take Denver) do a real service to the movement at this point? It could just be my perception, but I think that folks in the Valley are kinda, sorta hip to this whole OAuth thing. At least aware of it, if not actively working to jump onboard.

As Mr. Messina points out, OAuth will become truly helpful only when providers at both endpoints play along. And there a whole, whole lotta progressive, cool Bay Area Companies that will still need to rely on a lot of staid, conservative (but very smart and eager) service providers in places like Columbus to really make OAuth worth our collective while.

So, Eran and Yahoo! … Good on ya. 'A' for effort… 'B' for openness. And 'F' for advance notice.



This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on June 18, 2008 2:07 PM.

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