March 14, 2008
Its interesting how we've gone beyond the backend aspects of OpenID and the focus is now on honing the user experience. Clickpass aims to streamline the login process by prefilling the user's OpenID URL within a single login button.
Its a nice idea and seems to work pretty well, but I think that CardSpace is probably a better bet in the medium term. Clickpass gets over the "remember the URL" problem, but doesn't have anything to say on the anti-Phishing issue, whereas CardSpace could in principle tackle both at the same time. Still, in the short term this could be a really good way to increase adoption.
A more pragmatic solution was presented by David Recordon of SixApart in a speech at EduServ last year, which is to ask users not for their OpenID URL, but for things like their AOL Screen name and other easily-remembered identifiers which can be used by a service to easily construct the OpenID URL based on the patterns that providers like AOL use to create OpenIDs.
Finally, there is also the option to have this kind of functionality built into the browser itself - put your OpenID URL into the browser preferences, and have it populate the login button rather than have Clickpass as an intermediary.