Novell chief executive, Eric Schmidt, used his keynote address at Comdex on Tuesday to reinforce his crusade to encourage individuals to regain control of their personal identities on the Internet.
In a keynote that was based on the messages given at his kick-off session at Novell's annual Brainshare jamboree last March, Schmidt said Novell's campaign is to bring value to the Internet by making cyber-relationships easier to establish and maintain.
To help with this endeavour Schmidt announced the immediate availability of NDS eDirectory and Corporate Edition which enables companies and their online partners to access each other's network policies. This means users would need only one login procedure for all their relationships on the Web, either with their organisations' sites or those of their partner companies.
He said: "Customers see a view, not just into their own information, but also into the businesses they need to deal with. The products also goes through firewalls, and that's key."
Schmidt believes companies have shut customers out of vital information because firewalls have been inflexible. He explained: "Firewalls that say no to everything are being replaced by new architectures that go between businesses. From a systems administration perspective there is only one directory, and administrators can decide who administers which pieces of this new directory."
Schmidt is committed to the idea that individuals should assume and control their own identities in cyberspace, rather than be willing to give away their personal information to certain websites that may sell it on.
Enter Digital Me, a Web identification scheme that Schmidt originally outlined at Brainshare and officially launched at Internet World in October.
Digital Me allows users to set up vaults of personal information that would normally be contained within network directories at their work or at websites on which they have registered. The difference is that the individuals will be able to control this information themselves.
"If the Internet is about individuals and freedom to learn and innovate, then identity is how we empower those individuals," said Schmidt.
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