VRM West Coast R-Button Workshop May 2011

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Meeting held 2 May 2011 at Computer History Museum

Agenda: determine info and actions needed from R-Button by various entities in Personal Data Ecosystem (PDE).

R-Button (definition): open standard, minimal point of affordance for personal data ecosystem. User-driven data + services, VRM apps. It's the point in your frame (see below) where you manage your context.

Diagram 1:

ROW 1: Platform (tools that are separate from the app) (Platform <- Infrastructure -> Data host - row 2)

ROW 2: Data Host : Website (foreground app) (widget/content) : App (sideground and background) (context-based, not www) Example of apps: Kynetx app, GreaseMonkey, Toolbar (Website + App are value-added services)

Examples of instantiations:

  • Facebook: Facebook connect (on web pages)
  • Mydex: Purple Button (on web pages)
  • Kynetx: Tiki Button
  • Switchbook: Toggler

ROW 3: Individual:

  • ACTION: manage/turn on/off apps/services/permissions
  • ACTION: switch contexts
  • ACTION: do context-specific things (may be taken care of by an app for that context).
  • INFO: State of relationship:
    • foreground service,
    • content/widget,
    • activity indicator. See Relationship Status below.
  • ACTION: access app
  • ACTION: r-button preferences
  • ACTION: find app

Relationship status with service providers: unknown, active, inactive, terminated, potential


Doc's Diagram 2: person with thought balloon: (R-Button icon) = "relate"


Need: to facilitate function to something (icon and function) as ubiquitous as a back or home button. Needs to be on every bar, every browser.

Description of process: we have a frame (browser) with foreground activities and possibly idle foreground activities (e.g., other open windows or tabs in a browser). We also have some "sideground" that pays attention to foreground and background in a way that can interact.

  • Mydex is not a sideground process, not watching the user.
  • Kynetx is a sideground process, watches everything in browser (acting as a platform).
  • Switchbook is a sideground process, watching surfing as foreground app, interacting within frame.
  • ListenLog: user logs their own data for their own purposes. (NPR Tuner is foreground, stores in data host, access thru other apps or websites.)

R-Button is managing my context (personas, roles, etc.)

  • Role: Privileges (could have liabilities if role has responsibilities)
  • Actions -> Liabilities (generally)

Missions: Do what they don't!

  1. Get the data that they don't offer
  2. Find the app to integrate into the experience

Question: How does an app get into the R-Button? Example:

  1. Mr.App (link) -> /.well-known/applist
  2. h t t p: //mr.app.com/killerapp.mfst -> mime-type will trigger install r-button process
  3. permissions
    1. app (turn on, get manifest)
    2. salience - events of interest
    3. data stores
    4. UI

"Well-known URI:" see post from 2009 - now RFC 5785 .well-known


more... (keeping the connection alive)