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Shelter from the HailStorm

Our recent essay by Clay Shirky, "HailStorm: Open Web Services Controlled by Microsoft," described Microsoft's planned Web-services platform and offered Clay's thoughts on how it created a new form of centralization, bringing together a great deal of private information under a private, corporate umbrella.

The article drew quite a number of responses, most opposed to Microsoft's plans (not surprisingly). You can read most of these in the talkback section of the article.

We particularly enjoyed three of the responses, and we want to present them to you here.

First, Wrox author Kurt Cagle points out six "questionable decisions" in the design of Hailstorm that, he says, endanger Microsoft's chances for success

In the second piece,'s Frank Hecker agrees with Clay that HailStorm is all about control but points out that developers, not users, have the most to be concerned about. As guardian of consumer privacy, Microsoft may be enabling itself to lock out any third-party developer that fails to meet its criteria.

Finally, O'Reilly & Associates' editor Nat Torkington rants a bit about the dangers of Microsoft having too much control over your financial information and worries that, just as you have to enter personal information to access some Web sites, you may have to give up more than you want to take part in this new economy.

HailStorm: Open Web Services Controlled by Microsoft

Open Standards/Closed Mind

Who Is Microsoft Trying to Control?

Passport Is Evil