It’s All About the Conversation (At the Back of the Classroom)

Another year, and another Catalyst conference had come and gone. This one was very different. For one, the structure of the conference is very different from years past, focusing on thematic areas rather than topics of research. As such, there was no focused identity track, but rather a sprinkling of identity management topics throughout the various tracks. The track getting the most attention was definitely the mobility track, as everyone tries to figure out how to adapt to the growing move to mobile and mobile apps as the way that people interact with corporate resources and services. Cloud computing seemed to be a distant second. Secondly, I actually spent a lot of time in the tech demo area (yes, they have one at Catalyst now), talking about and demoing SCUID Lifecycle.

However, there was a bright shining moment of the kind of identity management madness that we’ve all come to expect from Catalyst. And it came during an identity focused set of talks by Lori Rowland and Ian Glazer. Lori’s talk tried to cover all the various challenges for IAM as it pertains to cloud computing, while Ian took on the thorny topic of externalized authorization with his usual wit and wackiness. The talks were great, but what elevated the sessions even more was the back channel discussion happening on Twitter in parallel, where we not only discussed the points being made on stage, but at many times just completely went off the rails. It doesn’t do it justice (you seriously had to be in the room and on Twitter to appreciate it), but I tried to capture some of the twitsanity below. Enjoy.