July 2009 - My 100th Birthday - July 2055

Several weeks ago I attended the delivery of an Integrating Siebel Applications 8.0 training in Amsterdam. One of the topics in the class started me thinking about present day problems and what the future may hold in store for us, so this month I thought I would try my hand at a science fiction short story. By the way, the topic that got me thinking was that of "Federated Data". Since the 1970's I have been reading and dealing with the problem of "Island's of Automation", which I define as the construction of dependent automation processes relying on the replication of common data, spread over disparate data structures. Federated Data storage techniques and technologies may finally offer a solution and change the way we design and develop lower cost and more accurate business solutions.

The year is 2055, and much to my amazement not only has medical technology extended my life so that I can celebrate my 100'th Birthday, technology and sensible diet ( I did say this was a work of fiction) ensures that I am mobile without pain, clear of mind, and contributing to the world around me. Still living in the Netherlands I have finally learned the Dutch language and happily celebrate the 15'th anniversary of the World Wide Federated Information project.

The last 50 years were busy once the great nations of the world came together to admit to, and decide on a plan to correct environmental damage as a result of population and pollution growth. The Dutch using super strong Nano materials managed to shore up their water management plans to handle the increase in weather intensity and rise in worldwide sea levels. The same plan that helped prevent horrible flooding, also contributed to reaching the countries negative pollution emission's targets with clean energy production distributed across smaller local clean production facilities. When it was projected that the next season of solar activity would affect communications and electric devices new solar insulation procedures for both technology and population where deployed. Humanity around the world was poised to benefit from all that a brighter future represented

Today in 2055 everyone in the Netherlands has access to local clean energy sources with fall back to new clean and high capacity fusion production generation plants feeding industry and science. With one power cable and one fiber cable coming into each home every person has the ability to conduct any form of public or commercial transaction or communication in the comfort of their home. Personal handsets allow us mobile connectivity to our home and community.

During the mobilization of Dutch resources to deal with threats to existence, it became necessary to respond to changes in the society. The increased electronic attacks on consumers , including identity and data theft on private, commercial and public information shake'd consumer confidence. The questionable quick to get rich business practices in the early part of the century left many consumers penniless and commercial institutions bankrupt. The governments of the world turned their attention to the recovery and re-structuring of the economy as crime continued and additional bailout's were required.

In the second decade of the century attention turned to business transparency and information security. Electronic information including commercial and public transactions would no longer be susceptible to hackers and cyber warriors. The goal was to make every transaction as private, secure, and accurate as a vote in an election (which I now do from home).

The trend that started at the turn of the last century when Commercial and Public Sector institutions began using the same purchased Relationship Management software grew into a synergy that would help change the world (This is a CRM posting and I had to fit the plug in somewhere:).

While I would have loved to be one of the young venturing off to the Martian colony, I am now retired and reflecting on one project that helped bring balance to a world on the edge.

Having been the victim of identity theft I was eager to participate in what started as the working group to define the direction for the next generation of the Customer Profile Exchange Specification ( http://www.idealliance.org/industry_resources/xml_inpractice/cpexchange ) a standard which helped shape the construction of the most popular Customer Relationship Management data models used in the early part of the century. When the major Application Software Vendors got together in a wave of partnerships started first between them and the greater business comunity; and then between the Public Sector Agencies and their Residents: and finally between the Public Sector and Business communities: the representation of information supporting Profile based operations became standardized worldwide.

The move to Service Oriented Architectures worked well inside the secure networks of a common Corporate Enterprise, but showed that standards in integration needed to be supported with standards in common data structures when moving across corporate boundaries. The new generation of electronic criminals slowed down the willingness of many corporations to integrate with each other necessitating the replication of data in each corporate application.

The replication of so much data and the problem of population movement caused by natural disasters brought havoc to the location based data stores. Corporations spent so much energy trying to keep customer information up to date that government agencies had to get involved in protecting consumers from a barrage of video, voice, and text based traffic meant to contact them for sales, service, marketing, and simple profile updating campaigns.

As application functionality grew in a decentralized, open source environment few were prepared for the new generation of cyber-warriors attacking national and commercial institutions. 2022 was a difficult year as communications companies struggled to adapt to the shutting down of the internet for first National Security reasons and latter heightened Solar Radiation levels.

Starting first in the US and then moving to Europe a Consumer Movement focused the Federal Sector's attention on the need to have a Federated Data Model that would protect a person's privacy while providing an authentication service that would audit any transaction associated to the individual.

New mobile and communications technologies enabled everyone to have real-time access to activity against their identity with bio-metric authorization. A change to internet standards took place in order to ensure that any user accessing the network was known and accountable for their activities. The standardization of phones to include bio-metric scanning devices helped create a generation of network technology that was completely transparent and secure.

The latest encryption technologies enabled personal data to be private and secure with each transaction tracked and identified as being sent and received. Closing the internet to anonymous traffic stimulated several private networks offering anonymous service, but the lack of consumers wishing to take the chance saw many venture capital investments collapse in the 2020's. Many of the large email providers were happy to cut off their anonymous transaction under pressure from governments like China and agencies in the US like the National and Homeland Security Agencies.

There were many new industries that were created as a result of the change in the internet and Federal Authentication Services that came into being. Smartphone's with bio-metric authentication technologies ensured that no transaction would take place unless there was a confirmation from both parties in the transaction.

The newly deployed Federal Servers acted as real-time clearing houses for all transaction ensuring the identify of all participants. Address, household and financial information never would be made available to a disreputable source as the Federated Information Service would access payment instructions, contact the financial institution authenticating payment and optionally contacting the consumer for approval. No longer could the children go crazy on your credit card without your knowing.

Companies looking to market products now access Federated Data warehouses of Consumer Demographics to reduce the cost of marketing campaigns and reach only people interested in receiving offers. Consumers were finally able to identify what type of cold and warm offers they were willing to receive and in what method of communication they wanted to use.

Network sites were finally able to identify the legitimacy of traffic requesting their services with the ability to shut down unwanted traffic and prosecute network criminals. Businesses did not have to waste their time trying to validate an address or phone number. The world had moved to a "Trust and Verify" philosophy.

The revolution in business did not stop with sales and marketing as transactions tracking consumer complaints were also validated and tracked. Demographics available to consumers enabled people to compare product by price, but also by reliability and service levels. Consumer spending increased as the consumer was able to trust the verified vendors. New laws protected consumers from vendors selling what they did not have while protecting vendors from illegitimate consumers or those with the lack of financial resources needed to complete the transaction. It turned out to be a win/win situation for all but the criminals.

The design of the World Wide Federated Information revolutionized the way we interact with the electronic world around us. Each citizens identification would be kept private but maintained by a centralized Federated Electronic Vault of data. The data vaults store information in distributed databases with a common data model, built with automated backups on the secured network locations. Each transaction included the certificates that would enable network and application access. Message Headers and data packet structures identified the content, encryption and security levels of the message. One new electronic language of communications emerged tying together more than just the economies of the world's nations.

With Technology and Transparency International relationship between nations became closer allocating resources towards peace and prosperity for what's left of the World's population which after the wars in the early decades of the century, the floods and tsunamis of the twenties, and the recent earthquakes and volcanoes in the last decade, it now stands at about one billion. No 100 years old I feel that the people of the world stood by the tough times and are now leaving our children a legacy that will one day take us to the stars.

Until next month, enjoy your holidays.

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