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[olpc-software] Authentication, authorization, personalization/imprinting



The "On installing software" thread touched on authentication...

Some traditional factors of authentication are:

something you know:
- passwords, PINs:  are these really usable if the target audience is
not literate/numerate?

something you have:
- the laptop itself?

something you are:
- biometrics?  My assumption is that these can't be done whilst staying
in budget

My guess here is that all that's really doable is one of (i) do you have
physical access to the machine?
(ii) do you know a secret encryption key? (for remote admin, though
whatever that would be would have to scale massively)
(unless the machines are going to a more literate/numerate group?)

Social factors may be applicable as well:  given that it is "One Laptop
Per Child", could the deployment mechanism have some per-machine
imprinting by the specific child, that identifies it as theirs? (writing
some files out to a directory somewhere)   For example, maybe when an
OLPC laptop boots up it could have a recording of the child saying "this
is <name>'s laptop" (which they'd record this when they first get their
laptop), or maybe even an onscreen photo of the child - so it's clearer
if someone steals a laptop.  I don't know how well each of these would
work across all cultural contexts though.  For that matter, to what
extent will the kids want to personalize the outside of their laptops?


Dave


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