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Exploring the science and magic of Identity and Access Management
Friday, February 23, 2024

Catalyst Conference 2006 – Day 3

Author: Mark Dixon
Friday, June 16, 2006
12:19 pm

Today was the last day of the conference, with only half a day of formal sessions. The Identity track transformed more into an application development track. While quite interesting from a personal interest standpoint, it was less valuable for me than the previous two days of intensive discussion of Identity Management issues. Jamie Lewis graciously allowed me to take his photo for today’s entry.

Anne Thomas Manes (Burton) – Leveraging Services Infrastructure to Improve the User Experience

  • Effective User Experience will result in increased efficiency and productivity, better customer satisfaction and better business results
  • Improve user experience through integration, data aggregation, seamless access, interactivity
  • Use contextual design principles – stay focused on the user’s task
  • Allow users to work in their preferred context (e.g. Email client)
  • Microsoft/SAP Duet will build access to business system within productivity applications
  • Rich Internet Applications (RIA) make web application almost as interactive and responsive as desktop clients. Put bling on the screen – but not too much.
  • RIA methods include AJAX (least sophisticated, most popular), Flash (widespread adoption), Java-based, XML-based, Windows Presentation Foundation (/Everywhere).

Diana Kelley (Burton) – Secure Collaboration: Learning not to Overshare

  • We are a sharing species; we share much online.
  • Communications and collaboration are cornerstones of today’s business.
  • Collaboration and communications are “kindred spirits.”
  • We must deal with security risks for email, VOIP, IM, RSS, Wikis, collab workspaces …
  • Cool toys (e.g. wireless phones, PDA’s) have security risks – exposing email, voice …
  • Follow standard security Mantras: integrity, accountability, use control, confidentiality, availability.

Udo Waibel (SAP Labs) – Leveraging SAP’s Enterprise Service Architecture (ESA) to Create a New User Experience

  • SAP has not known for designing good user interfaces. Duet is a radical new approach to UI.
  • UI context switch takes away time and focus.
  • Outlook is the user interface of choice for many people (love it and hate it).
  • Objective: Provide business process context in your UI of choice.
  • Integrate with Microsoft Office, using a meta-data – driven UI.
  • Close integration with Outlook + business relevant information.
  • Architected from scratch with Enterprise Services Architecture.
  • Active Directory is used for authorizing access to the UI, but not within the system.

Richard Monson-Haefal (Burton) – RIA: Rich Internet Applications

  • RIA – client server with the reach of the Internet, with the sophistication of the desktop
  • RIA technologies are easily misused and abused with inappropriate applications, poor designs or poor implementations.
  • Client options: Ajax (Asynchronous Java script and XML), Flash, Java applets plus several others.
  • Server options: Java EE, Microsoft .net, LAMP, Ruby on Rails.
  • Advantages include ease of use, near-desktop user experience, SOA/Portal synergy, network/server performance (depending on design), end user productivity and ease of development.
  • Disadvantages include ease of abuse, complexity, constraints on reach and network/server performance (depending on design).
  • Seamless integration of AJAX with HTML makes it a disruptive force in the RIA market because it AJAX can be easily added to existing HTML assets.
  • Adobe Flash is the current RIA market leader. Excellent reach because of broad support in web browsers and devices. Excellent tooling.
  • Java Applets are supported by a huge ecosystem, excellent reach and excellent tooling, but is losing mindshare to Ajax and Flash.
  • Non pervasive solutions include Microsoft WPF/E, Mozilla XUL, W3C recommendations.
  • Burton believes that Java will disappear as a viable RIA solution in 2007, possibly replaced by Microsoft WPF/E.

Joe Winchester (IBM) – The Battle for the Presentation Layer, or It’s not over till the fat client sings.

  • One of the reasons for success of the web is that the UI is that applications are easily distributed.
  • Old terms – dumb terminals, fat clients, thin clients (derogatory terms).
  • Current terms – Rich clients, Rich Internet Applications (positive terms).
  • Death of the desktop application occurred because of difficulty in deployment these applications.
  • Dissing Java applets is “so last millenium.” JavaStar is worth looking at.
  • Death of the browser application will occur because of delays in waiting for web pages, poor UI design and poor error handling.
  • AJAX has a lot of hype, but won’t scale.
  • Google Maps is cool, but Google Earth, a desktop application, is superior.
  • The important argument is not about fat vs thin for dumb vs intelligence. It’s about rich content delivered in different ways.

Jim McDonald (Ingersoll Rand) – Identity Enabling a Dealer Portal: Lessons Learned from Ingersoll Rand’s Identity Management Deployment

  • Many brands, many dealer portals, many applications, different logins for each site, technology silos, complex technology mesh.
  • Objective: simplify dealer access to online applications and simplify architecture.
  • Implemented Unified Identity Management using Oblix.
  • Key ingredients: communicate executive support, group design session, developers cookbook, enroll teams as stakeholder.
  • Didn’t replace applications, but integrated with core functionality of Oblix system.
  • They reduced help-desk calls through user self-service.

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3 Responses to “Catalyst Conference 2006 – Day 3”

    Thanks Mark, excellent summary!

    Comment by Peter Gustafsson on June 20, 2006 at 1:06 am


    Thanks for stopping by, and for your comments. I appreciate the links on your blog.

    Best regards,


    Comment by Mark Dixon on June 20, 2006 at 2:12 am

    [Trackback] The last couple of weeks have seen a lot of activity in identity management land. Last week saw Burton Group’s Catalyst Conference, which is always one of the key events in the identity management calendar. The conference also saw a meeting of the Id…

    Comment by On IT-business alignment on June 20, 2006 at 6:57 am

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