2008 Is The Year of Data Portability

Marshall Kirkpatrick has posted that Microsoft will be joining the Data Portability work group. Marshall and the Read/Write/Web team appear to be huge advocates of this work group. I am a huge advocate myself even though there are more questions then answers. It appears that 2008 is rapidly shaping up to be a ground-shifting year in regards to data portability. Just last week Yahoo announced that they would begin supporting OpenId as a login standard.

That has been just one of the massive steps that have taken place. For the uber-geeks, data portability is theoretically beautiful but will face significant challenges. It needs to happen though. As we become members of countless websites, it becomes increasingly challenging to track where we are registering as well as finding all of our friends on each site that we register for. This results in the need for data portability standards.

OpenSocial has attempted to define itself as one of the leading standards. There are also other standards including XFN, FOAF and many more. None of these have gained much traction though except for a few fringe advocates that embrace these standards and build them into their new projects. Chances are that none of them except OpenSocial and OpenID will gain traction. I previously argued that SNAPI will defeat OpenSocial and that still may be the case.

There are going to be many challenges facing the evolution of data portability but the creation of the Data Portability workgroup, will surely help to make 2008 an interesting year. Is data portability something that you care about? Do you think 2008 will actually bring change or is it just hype?