Friday, December 14, 2007


When you're commenting on blogs, or more generally, logging into many accounts on many websites, it can be a nightmare for the user to have to remember an array of different usernames and passwords. There have been moves in the past to try to centralise the authentication process; Microsoft tried and failed with their Passport service.

An open-source solution is gaining ground. It's called OpenID and it works like this:
  • You create one account at any OpenID server e.g. at You then get a free OpenID which is your username. Mine is
  • You can optionally connect your blog or website with your OpenID by adding a couple of lines to your HTML code. This would allow you to use your blog or website's URL as an alias of your real OpenID, e.g. I can leave comments as or instead of my real OpenID
  • Comment on someone else's blog, whether it is powered by Wordpress, LiveJournal or Blogger; as long as it supports OpenID authentication, you can log in with your OpenID instead of creating a new account

OpenID support has just been made available in Blogger. You can enable OpenID support on your blog by changing the commenting settings.



As a devout follower of the The West Wing, I was interested in watching a behind the scenes video of the real White House at Christmas. The film is quite surreal. It features a small dog which trots around the White House and is spoken to by Mr & Mrs Bush, Tony Blair and others. Mr Blair seems to have aged ten years since giving up as Prime Minister and has taken up talking to dogs instead.

It's like Bouncer's Dream, but with heads of state.

Tony Blair on Barneycam
[Click on the picture above and then on the "Watch the latest Barney Cam"]