Impressions from the ARTS User Conference
By David Dorf on Sep 22, 2009
My favorite presentation was easily Lynn Myers' discussion of how he embraces change at Lowes and uses standards to minimize the impacts of change. As he expressed with his "tarheel" accent, "I'm gonna get me one of those SOAs" just doesn't cut it. Using the ARTS SOA Blueprint for Retail as a guide for moving toward SOA is welcomed by the retail community.
A first draft of the Cloud Computing for Retail whitepaper was released to attendees and generated much buzz. From the presentations and discussions I heard, there is no clear agreement on the definition of cloud computing nor its benefits. But I need to give the whitepaper a proper read before passing judgment. Regardless, it was clear that this type of information with a retail perspective is sorely needed by the industry. (BTW, I wrote an article on this topic for RIS News.)
Another discussion that generated much discussion was the need for end-to-end encryption to protect credit card data. To date the credit card organizations have forced PCI compliance on retailers and processors without holding banks (issuers and acquirers) to the same standards. IMHO, the right answer is to either require PINs for credit transactions just as we do for debit, or switch to smartcards (i.e. Chip & PIN) as the rest of the world is doing. As far as I know, both solutions already handle key management, and using tokens post-authorization would simplify long-term storage.
Gotta go board the plane now. Anybody else want to comment on the conference?