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Subject: My role in SSTC



It is probably obvious to some of you that over the last couple of months, I’ve have had considerable difficulty dedicating my usual amount of time to work on SSTC tasks and this has delayed several important action items that I own (e.g. Tech Overview revisions). The delays have occurred partly due to illness and partly due to the holidays, but much of it has been as a result of some changes in my responsibilities here at RSA Security.  Some things that have been in the works have been finalized and I have begun taking on security architecture work in an area that is completely unrelated to SAML and web services where I have been focused for the last 3+ years.  As a result, I’ve come to the conclusion that it is not going to be possible for me to continue in my role as co-chair of the SSTC.  I’ll need to make this effective in the next few weeks.


While I am looking forward to my new challenge, I am filled with mixed emotions because of the incredible experience I’ve had working with all of you on the TC and because of my very strong professional interest in the technology.  Unfortunately, I just can’t keep up with learning and executing in my new role and contributing in a meaningful way to the existing one.


I’m quite proud, and hope that all of you are also, of what the SSTC has accomplished over the last several years. It was 2+ years ago, after leading the TC to complete the groundbreaking release of SAML 1.0, that Jeff Hodges and Joe Pato talked Prateek and me into running for the co-chair positions… my arm still aches at times from the twisting J.  At the time, none of us knew what the future held for the technology.  But since then, we delivered the SAML 1.1 update and then collaborated with the Liberty Alliance and Shibboleth project to rebuild SAML into the incredible v2.0 release!  It’s been a real honor to work with all of you on these projects!


I do intend to maintain my TC membership and participate in the TC in a diminished role for at least the next several months (if not longer).  I will certainly be making a concerted effort to wrap up my existing action items soon after the RSA Conference is over so that we can get that batch of specs released and approved.


While my personal role in SSTC is being scaled back, I assure you that my company’s commitment to SAML technology remains the same, as we view it to be a critical component of the identity and access management and the web services fields.


I know that I leave the chair in the very capable hands of Prateek for the time being, although I know that he will be looking for nominations ASAP from the membership for someone to join him as a new co-chair.


I’ll be missing the con-call on the 14th due to the RSA Conference, but will be back on the call on the 28th.  Until then…



Rob Philpott
Senior Consulting Engineer
RSA Security Inc.
Tel: 781-515-7115
Mobile: 617-510-0893
Fax: 781-515-7020
I-name:  =Rob.Philpott


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