OpenID Connect: Keeping Things Simple

Earlier this week we participated in the OpenID Connect Summit at the Microsoft Research Center in Mountain View.  The event brought together identity experts across the industry for a formal checkpoint to discuss the OpenID Connect specifications and future interoperability.

Key aspects of OpenID Connect are simplicity and usability.  By building upon the adoption of the OAuth 2.0 protocol and by applying developer feedback to iterate on Connect’s specifications, the spec’s contributors have assembled a standards framework that can be adopted across the industry.  Users will benefit from more intuitive interactions and discoverability.  OpenID Connect also includes support for browser-based, mobile, and javascript clients, recognizing that users lead more connected lives.

OpenID Board Chairman Nat Sakimura demonstrated a technical interop to show how relying parties can use Connect to authenticate and obtain user profile data from an OpenID provider.  Nat shared an RP implementation from Janrain using Google as an identity provider and showed OpenID Connect’s Sandbox obtaining a user’s social profile from the Japanese social network Mixi.

It was good to see participation across the public and private sectors at this event as well as the international interest.  Upcoming events will help set the table for the new marketplaces built around identity as we participate at the Internet Identity Workshop next month in Mountain View, an Open Identity Exchange summit November 9th and 10th in Washington, D.C. and the OpenID Summit in Tokyo December 1st.