Essential Characteristics of a Personal Data Store


I'm in a session at IIW where personal data stores are being discussed. Drummond Reed and Paul Trevethick are moderating.

Someone asked Paul why Facebook isn't a personal data store. Certainly is a store of personal data. Facebook has a rich and powerful mechanism for sharing data with apps. But...

  • They can change the terms any time they like
  • They monetize my data--who owns or controls the transactions

Mary Hodder gave a "bank vs bar" analogy. Facebook is a bar, not a bank. There are lots of options and things to do, but no fiduciary responsibility or interoperability.

The point is that a PDS ought to have specific characteristics or else everything will be a PDS. Every company will say "we have a PDS!" and it will be as meaningless as "SOA governance."

Here are some characteristics that we've discussed

  • Controlled by a person
  • Virtually distributed
  • Seemless permissioned access to your digital data
  • Data portability
  • Interoperability
  • Provisions for ownership, co-ownership, authority
  • Control access to data for service creation

We could probably come up with more, but this is a pretty good list.