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Daedalus was the mythical great architect and artificer of the classical world. Today, embedded intelligence is enabling the most profound changes in the way we create and use buildings since his day.

Building Intelligence meets the Intelligent Building. The Intelligent Building negotiates with the Intelligent Grid. How will this transform how we interact with the physical world?

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Wednesday
May302007

Time for Pervasive Security?

Pervasive Security was a new track at Connectivity Week. Pervasive security occurs when every transaction is aware of the identity, location, context, and role of the requestor, wherein identity might be determined by someone identity source external to the organization, role might be determined by an external business process, location might distinguish, say, between access internal or external to a firewall, and context is the business situation surrounding the interaction.

I am not going to discuss Pervasive Security yet. By way of illustration, however, I will discuss pervasive time.

Jeff Stern, of KoolSpan, gave an excellent talk during the session. He illustrated pervasive security by recalling the development of Pervasive Time.

Time started as a city-wide, and then a town-wide phenomenon, with a clock in the central cathedral or courthouse. The entire town could look up to the single instance of time.

Later, the well-to do could acquire time, in the form of large grandfather clocks for the wealthy. In time these expanded into mantle clocks affordable for the middle classes. The model now is one clock per house.

The next development was personal time, as watches came to the fore. Everyone wore a watch, everyone had personal time.

Today, we have pervasive time. Incredibly accurate time is the underpinning of all internet activity. Each device in the house seems to have its own clock, ready to flash 12:00 angrily at us if power flickers.

And most people? Well, they no longer buy mantle clocks. Or even watches. All but one in the room had no watch, but instead reached for their cell-phone, its time perpetually updated over the ether.

Time is now everywhere, and nowhere. Time is pervasive. Security is next.

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