Tangling with identity management? There's help

Portal designed to aid developers building identity-based apps

A new portal has been launched to help developers who are building applications using identity management technology.

The Web site, openLiberty.org, will have tools and open-source libraries that developers need for applications using federation and Web-services standards endorsed by the Liberty Alliance and its openLiberty Project.

The project will give developers access, under an Apache Version 2.0 license, to open-source code libraries that can be imported into applications they are building, said Jason Rouault, vice president of the Liberty Alliance management board and chief technology officer of identity management software at Hewlett-Packard Co.

In the next four weeks, openLiberty.org will define ideal architectures to guide code development before "they start throwing code up there," Rouault said. The idea is to stockpile code that can be used with multiple operating systems, development environments and languages, including Java, Ruby and Perl.

"Lots of parties said they have code they are willing to contribute to the project," Rouault said.

Refined code will eventually undergo interoperability tests by the Liberty Alliance to ensure it functions correctly, he said.

The Web site will initially focus on ID-WSF (Identity Web Services Framework) Web Services Consumer specifications, which are important for service providers involved in Web-based services such as music downloads, Rouault said. The specifications enable secure transactions, such as the retrieval of a customer's personal information, from another authentication service.

The site will also work with other Liberty-backed standards, including ID-FF 1.1, 1.2 and SAML (Security Assertion Markup Language) 2.0, which concern identity federation. It also includes Web services specifications: ID-WSF 1.0, 1.1, 2.0 and Liberty People Service, a Web services framework for securely managing calendars and blogs, plus other applications.

The code itself will be stored on SourceForge, the popular open-source development site. A wiki will be used to discuss projects and serve as a development road map, Rouault said.

Copyright © 2007 IDG Communications, Inc.

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