Google is growing up. As they do they seem to abandon their “Don’t be evil.” motto and adopt Microsoft’s “Embrace, extend and extinguish” strategies. Yesterday they announced, only two days after Microsoft, that they were officially supporting the popular OpenID standard. Many blogs applauded this move as OpenID is a great standard that needs all the support it can get.
Unfortunately what Google has launched has only partially to do with OpenID. It sorta looks and feels like OpenID but when you look at it actually works you will see that this is a proprietary technology built and owned by Google that providers will have to implement besides OpenID.
Not exactly helpful to the OpenID movement.
As explained here:
Basically, Google has rewritten OpenID. Not only is it not exactly the same as the current OpenID protocol, it’s so different that existing OpenID relying parties won’t be able to use it. Only a handful of “partner sites” have been updated to understand Google’s perverted version of the OpenID standard, and anyone else hoping to authenticate via “OpenID” to Google’s servers will need to do the same.
Google’s implementation of OpenID seems to be incompatible with everyone else. Of course Google is big and might very well persuade lots of web services to drop OpenID support and simply go for The Google Solution.
“Well, just tried using Google and checked on the OpenID mailing list and they are NOT compliant. You have to type in http://www.google.com/accounts/o8/id if you want to use Google on an RP that has not implemented Google’s magic extensions. Very disappointing.
Bad Google. Bad and evil Google…
UPDATE: it seems that the day after this post Google updated their services to become 100% OpenID compatible. Pretty cool! Thanks for the tip David Recordon!