Phones will join the Internet eventually
GrandCentral makes it possible to have just one phone number. Any imaginable phone may ring when that specific number is called. This is of course a huge step forward making it cheaper to be reachable at all times. I guess this is the reason people actually have satellite cell phones. For a more primitive being like myself the potential reachableness is already high enough. I am thinking more about turning the phone off and not bringing it along all the time. I don't need to be reachable when I am out playing basket with my kids. The kids is the only reason I have the phone on at most times. If they really need me I want to reachable. If my customer or my mother or my cousin or my friend needs me - they can wait until I am within reach again. Given all this it is amazing to think that we actually managed to live without cell phones 15 years ago.
Enough about phones. This GrandCentral thing that O'Reilly Radar was kind enough to inform me about made me start thinking about what we really need in the web 2.0 era. Phone numbers are a primitive way to id things. It is a way we are used to - we feel the same way about bank account numbers and credit card numbers. But email and web addresses shouldn't be numbers. Strange. I mean - it is all numbers underneath in the IP protocol so we could just as well know google.com by 22.214.171.124 as we know my cell phone number by +46708196692.
So suppose we could get rid of phone numbers and replace it with something similar to email addresses and that we could have exactly one address that could be used for different kinds of text messaging and voice calls. We need a handle that uniquely represents a person and that is the only handle needed to communicate with a person. This OpenID thing may be a candidate to use. Many persons have a kind of OpenID approach anyway using the same id and password for any not-so-important site. Uniting it would be a huge step forward securitywise. A future step will be to have the open identity as address for all contacts with a person.
Phones will join the Internet eventually. And Internet will mature and be more tool and less toy.