From:"" <> 
Subject: This Week at A Question of Identity
Date: Wed, 18 Dec 2002 09:46:17 -0700
This Week at A Question of Identity

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Dear Readers,

Passport or Liberty? If you're looking for an identity management
solution you've probably been asking yourself this question for a
solid year, and still there's no good answer forthcoming.  The   
good news: With both platforms nearing maturity (or at least some
semblance of maturity), we're finally at the point where you can 
decide between the two.  The bad news: Your decision may be      
irrelevant, as the two solutions have become so similar that you 
may as well flip a coin. OK, it's not quite that simple, but     
we've done the legwork for you in our story "A Question of Identity".      
Check the link below for the full scoop!

In other news, you may have noticed that our domain has gotten   
just a little bit shorter.  At long last we've acquired, which is blissfully more wieldy than the old  No need to update your bookmarks, because  
both URLs will still work, but we sure think it's easier to      
remember and quicker to type!  And it just looks nicer, doesn't  


Christopher Null
Editor-in-Chief, New Architect magazine


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A Question of Identity: Passport, Liberty, and the single sign-on

"A typical tech-savvy consumer is likely to maintain separate     
usernames and passwords for more than a dozen online resources,  
including email servers, instant messaging clients, favorite     
retailers, bank accounts, and so on. While this password glut may
seem like a simple annoyance for end users, in fact it's a       
concern that online businesses should take seriously.

Managing all those accounts often means using the same password  
over and over, or resorting to other, equally bad habits\x97like 
writing account information on Post-It notes and leaving them in 
obvious places. Every time a user selects an easy-to-guess       
password, reuses a password at multiple locations, or leaves one 
in plain view, that user compromises not only his or her own     
identity, but system security as well. And every time a user     
forgets a password, some company must expend IT resources to     
reset it -- a cost that quickly adds up for businesses with      
thousands of customers."

Case Studies: The Perfect Present
"The winter holidays came early for Russ Berrie and Co. The $300  
million gift company has integrated a new technology 
infrastructure that streamlines transactions with its customers, 
suppliers, and distributors throughout the globe.

'Our previous systems did a pretty good job of bringing orders   
in, managing shipments, and collecting money,' says Alan Heger,  
VP of information systems at the Oakland, New Jersey-based       
company. 'But we can do a better job delivering information from 
all of our back-office applications. We also want a better front 
end for our customers.'

And for good reason. Russ Berrie, a forty-year-old company, sells
more than six thousand gift-oriented products (teddy bears,      
ceramic picture frames, etc.) to more than fifty thousand retail 
outlets throughout the world. The company's typical customers are
toy stores and card shops that stock small gifts. Many of Russ   
Berrie's products are seasonal items (for instance, Christmas    
stocking stuffers) that require close tracking through the supply
chain. Otherwise, Russ Berrie risks having the wrong product mix 
during seasonal and holiday transitions."

Review: OmniCluster SlotShield 3000

"Traditionally, the term "blade server" refers to a 
computer-on-a-board designed to plug into a dedicated rack-mount 
chassis. Last spring, OmniCluster introduced its own variant of  
the blade server, the SlotServer. It's built as a standard PCI   
board, so it will plug into any open slot in a system; you don't 
need a special chassis.

Now OmniCluster has turned the SlotServer into an "appliance     
blade" called the SlotShield by shipping it with a special       
software load. The SlotShield comes with a disk image of Check   
Point VPN-1/Firewall-1 and Linux, transforming it into a single  
PCI-slot firewall."

Access: Interview with Phil Zimmermann

Phil Zimmermann created Pretty Good Privacy (PGP) in 1991, which 
subsequently earned him a criminal investigation for violating   
U.S. export restrictions and a buyout from Network Associates. In
2002, NAI sold PGP back to PGP Corp., where Zimmermann now       

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Copyright (c) 2002.  All rights reserved.

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