posted a preface to the Digital ID World conference last week:
There will soon be significant battles over digital ID. The danger is that they won't be seen for what they are, but as isolated fights specific to a particular industry or situation. The essential objective should be balance -- anonymity vs. identity, openness vs. control, unification vs. segmentation. Too far in any direction, and we'll suffer unintended consequences that far exceed the benefits.
The lack of a big picture view -- concentrating on the battle, not the war -- is what I see as the gravest danger in every major issue we face. Despite all the connectedness of the web, most people still don't (or can't, or won't) connect the dots.
That's why I post on stuff like Monsanto's scorched-earth IP crusade -- those RIAA arguments can be (are) applied to the food supply of the planet. That's serious business; yet the focus is what a bunch of college dorm rats are doing. Is that a strategy for people who are serious about their future?
You don't have to be right about all the details, but you do have to be willing to take a whack at it. You don't even have to be very good at it -- A willingness to look at something that resembles a whole system today, and to make a wild-ass guess about what it might look like a year from now, makes you a frigging savant. Somebody that's as sharp an observer as William Gibson starts looking like Moses.