Category: Vidoop

Vidoop banks on, well, banks

VidoopMany know Portland-based Vidoop—yes, they DO have a new look—as purveyor of OpenID provider myVidoop and home to the DiSo Project, “an umbrella project for a group of open source implementations of distributed social networking concepts.”

But Vidoop also has a number of revenue generating tricks in its bag, from the advertising that comprises its ImageShield to the enhanced security products that it sells.

Today at Finovate, Vidoop launched a new suite of those security products targeted at financial institutions, healthcare organizations, and corporations. And for banks in particular, Vidoop highlights that they offer “three options for providing strong authentication for accessing Web sites.”

The announcement appears to be striking a chord. According to Banktastic, “Your bank or credit union NEEDS to look into this.”

Of course, the real magic of Vidoop’s easy to implement, tough to defeat, advertising-supported security is that it not only reduces implementation and maintenance costs, it actually provides another way for businesses to generate revenue.

The ImageShield provides advertisers the opportunity to sponsor images within certain categories. Customers who choose to enable advertising-supported logins can obtain Vidoop’s increased security at little or no cost, and in some cases, generate revenue through the sponsored images.

“Not only can financial institutions potentially make money using Vidoop, but they can also realize substantial savings through customer service,” said Mitch Savage, Vidoop’s Executive Vice President, Business Development. “The number one call to most customer support centers is login issues. Vidoop provides an easier way for users to remember passwords with images, and now we have two additional ways they can authenticate without requiring expensive call center support.”

For more from Mitch on Vidoop’s new offering, here’s an interview from Finovate:

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For more information, visit Vidoop.

Silicon Florist Podcast 03: ORBlogs, events, Internet Astronauts, events, Vidoop, events, Iterasi, and more events

Links from this podcast include:

And thanks very much to Matthew Atkins for the bumper riff.

Vidoop Oregon Trail: You have (not) died of dysentery

Oregon Trail You have died of dysenteryIt’s common knowledge that we are afforded the luxury of our relatively cushy existence here in Oregon thanks to the efforts of pioneers. Pioneers who spent many an arduous day sitting on uncomfortable wagon seats as they headed toward their new home.

Last I heard, that whole “pioneer” thing isn’t a requirement to be a resident of the state anymore. Unfortunately—or perhaps fortunately for our amusement—no one told the soon-to-be officially Portland-based Vidoop.

Because they’re recreating the Oregon Trail with a trip from Tulsa to Portland. That’s right. The entire Tulsa crew is packing into a convoy and heading north to their new home.

28 people. 4 RVs. 7 U-Hauls. 42 people. 4 RVs. 5 U-Hauls, 2 trailers, 2 cars, 8 pets, and 1 blueberry bush. 5 days to get across the country.

And you get to watch all the hijinx with the Vidoop Oregon Trail blog! It’s like our own little Real World Road Rules episode.

And while there’s not much there now, bear in mind that the trip just started. There’s no telling what kind of hilarity will ensue after these guys have been on the road for a few days.

Here’s hoping they never buy more meat than they can haul back to their wagons, no one is attacked by rabid squirrels, and last but certainly not least, no one succumbs to dysentery.

Vidoop is expecting to land in Portland by Sunday. Until then, stay tuned to the Vidoop Oregon Trail.

Waiting for the right gig pays off: Troy Harlan joins Vidoop

One of the regular fixtures of the burgeoning Portland Web tech scene has been Troy Harlan (@theInfovore), a recent transplant from the Bay Area.

And time and time again, I would hear the inevitable small-talk question arise. “So… where do you work?” And time and time again, Troy would respond that he was “looking for the right thing to come along.”

Last week, Harlan hinted that the wait might be at an end, but that he “didn’t want to jinx it.”

Well, it looks like the waiting has paid off. And how.

Troy will be joining Portland-based Vidoop on September 2nd as Senior Sales Engineer. He will serve as a primary technical resource for Vidoop’s newest customers, helping them through their integration testing and shepherding them into production.

Mitch Savage, Troy’s new boss, shares that Vidoop was eager to work with Troy because of “his strong technical chops and his broad experience with system integrations.”

“The hardest thing about bringing Troy on is that his start date occurs during Vidoop’s all-company move to Portland,” said Savage. “But we’re making it work. That’s how much we wanted Troy on board.”

Congratulations to Troy on his new gig. And congrats to Vidoop on continuing to snap up the best and brightest in town.

The rest of us are still polishing our resumes.

Vidoop launches Skunk Works 2.0

Vidoop Skunk Works 2.0In the midst of World War II—likely a bit before all of our times—Lockheed (now Lockheed Martin) funded a highly creative group of engineers, focused on developing the next generation of aircraft. Shrouded in secrecy, the project turned out concepts that continue to influence the aircraft at which we still marvel today.

And which, with all likelihood, continues to secretly burn the midnight oil constructing concept craft that will provide the transport of tomorrow.

The project, according to Wikipedia’s entry, was affectionately dubbed the “Skunk Works,” after a popular comic of the day:

The term “Skunk Works” came from the Al Capp comic strip Li’l Abner, which was popular in the 1940s. In the comic, the “Skonk Works” was a backwoods still operated by Big Barnsmell, known as the “inside man at the Skonk Works”. In his secret facility, he made “kickapoo joy juice” by grinding dead skunks and worn shoes into a smoldering vat.

So why the history lesson? Did I change the blog focus to have more of a Lost Oregon vibe?

No. But, tarry a moment longer, gentle reader. Bear with me. Please allow me to explain.

Why, in the name of all things AJAX-y, would I ever try to equate this sort of old-school aircraft engineering concept with anything occurring in the Web 2.0 world of today?

Because, I’ve long held the opinion that Portland-based Vidoop—with its hires like Scott Kveton and Chris Messina coupled with its continued incubation of some very cutting edge projects—is well on its way to creating Skunk Works 2.0.

And Kveton and Messina aren’t alone. Vidoop has hired up a laundry list of talent. A list that bled Tulsa dry and caused them to look for other markets. And now, they’ve been hiring a very intelligent group of folks here in Portland.

But what Vidoop is doing with those people is as interesting as any of the projects on which they’re working.

You see, Vidoop is giving them space. Giving them free reign. Giving them autonomy. And allowing them to be creative. Or to continue the creative works that they may have been pursuing elsewhere.

Only they’re giving them more resources with which to work.

And today, they formalized that ad hoc effort of the last 4-6 months a bit more with the announcement of Vidoop Labs.

Still not making the Skunk Works connections? Well, the intuitive leap becomes far less difficult when you consider this little snippet (also from the Wikipedia “Skunk Works” entry):

[Skunk Works was an] organization given a high degree of autonomy and unhampered by bureaucracy, tasked with working on advanced or secret projects.

Ah ha! Now, it’s starting to work.

I mean, what better way to describe Vidoop’s early focus on OpenID, its adoption of the DiSo efforts, and its funding the development of efforts like Emailtoid and EAUT (Yute!).

Vidoop is clearly pursuing something unique. A Skunk Works of its own. A development organization that pushes the envelope for the Open Web. That dreams up what could be. That lives free of the bureaucracy that tends to hamper more thoughtful and progressive projects. That seeks to fund and feed those projects that may not otherwise get the care and feeding they deserve.

And that’s happening right here in Portland.

And with the launch of Vidoop Labs, the Vidoop folks have begun formalize an umbrella for the projects already underway:

Today we are launching Vidoop Labs as a central place where we will be showcasing existing and future technology projects that we believe will help take the Internet and its users to a better place. Since most of these projects are open source in nature, I’d like to encourage everyone to get some code on their hands. We are all in this together!

Now, granted, one major difference between the original Skunk Works and Vidoop Labs is the veil of secrecy. Vidoop Labs is churning quickly and fairly transparently, if the Emailtoid to EAUT progression is any indication.

And I expect that trend to continue.

Not to get all Pollyanna, but man, what a great experiment.

Get a bunch of smart people in a room. And let them create. Let them do what they do best. And see what comes of it.

Not knowing, at the outset, what you’re going to get. But having utmost confidence that the team will deliver something creative, well engineered, and valuable.

If that’s not the kind of work I’d like to see happening in Portland, I don’t know what is.

Interested in more information on the rocket surgery occurring in your own backyard? Take a look at Vidoop Labs, with its sections for Emailtoid, EAUT, DiSo, and the inevitable “coming soon.”

Vidoop execs to be profiled in The Oregonian

VidoopIt’s no secret that I started Silicon Florist as a way to shine a spotlight on the Web startups in town who—for whatever reason—don’t get the proper attention from the local or national media.

There’s cool stuff happening here. And stories that need to be told.

And when the traditional media starts taking notice—like when Oregon Business Magazine covering local Web 2.0 startups—that makes me happy. Because, quite frankly, these folks deserve the recognition.

And now, I have some more good news of the traditional media taking notice. I think. At least I hope.

For in a recent post on OpenID, Mike Rogoway of The Oregonian and Silicon Forest blog mentions:

Meet Vidoop‘s bosses in tomorrow’s Oregonian.

Just a passing mention. But, hopefully, the precursor to some real coverage for one of the most forward thinking companies in town.

I’ll be sure to hit the newsstand tomorrow, in hopes of seeing some decent ink on Vidoop.

[Update] And here’s the article from The Oregonian, “Coffee Break: Vidoop’s bosses.”

Vidoop scoops up Bob Uva

VidoopPortland-based Vidoop continues to attract leading talent. Their latest hire, Bob Uva, is an industry veteran with an impressive development history. His most recent efforts have been focused on .NET C# distributed application development.

So what does Vidoop gain with Bob’s talents? Good question. And I say that, mostly, because it’s exactly the same question I asked Bob.

“I have been a software developer for twenty-two years, working mostly with the Microsoft stack, everything from Windows 16-bit to 32-bit programming in C, C++ and C#/.NET,” said Uva. “I bring a lot of experience with Microsoft technologies to Vidoop, as well as a desire to help the company realize a larger vision in open web technologies for identity management and security.”

Glad to see the Vidoop team continue to grow even as they ready themselves for a mass influx of Tulsa talent. I, for one, can’t wait to see what this team is able to accomplish.

For more information, see Bob’s profile on LinkedIn, follow him on Twitter, or visit his personal blog. For more on the company, visit Vidoop.

Vidoop ImageShield + AOL OpenID = 100 million+ potential Vidoop users

Portland-based Vidoop‘s ImageShield technology has been purported to be one of the most unhackable credential schemes on the market. It’s been tested, time and time again.

But today, the real testing begins.

Why? Because today a little online-service provider named AOL just released Vidoop ImageShield technology to each and every one of its users—each of whom have an AOL-based OpenID.

AOL OpenID featuring Vidoop Image Shield

Now, it’s no secret that this has been in the works. AOL has been forthright about the fact that it has been testing the technology. But it’s been a private BETA:

At AOL we had a chance to try out their ‘ImageShield’ technology since last few months. What we did is basically provide our AOL OpenID users (AOL users using their openid.aol.com/) with a way to secure their accounts by binding an ‘ImageShield’ password, so from next time when they try to login with their AOL OpenID at a 3rd party Relying Party site, instead of the traditional ‘password’, they can login securely using the ‘ImageShield’. In that way they can make sure they are always signing in from the secure AOL login page and also make sure they are not giving away their ‘real’ password to any possible attackers. This has been deployed on our closed beta environment as a trial run to see how our beta OpenID users would feel about the overall user experience and of course the security of their accounts.

Not anymore. Now, as the screenshot above illustrates, Vidoop’s technology is accessible to the public.

I hear you. “So what?” Well, the “so what” is this…

For OpenID logins, Vidoop’s ImageShield technology has generally been available to users of myVidoop. And that’s been about it.

And as much as I respect the Vidoop team and their accomplishments, I feel pretty safe saying that the myVidoop user base is slightly less than the AOL user base. Just a smidge.

But now? Now there is no difference.

Now, the Vidoop ImageShield user base is the AOL user base. Because Vidoop ImageShield is accessible to more than 100 million AOL users.

And, if I had to guess, I would say that that potential—the potential to have more than 100 million people using Vidoop technology to log in to OpenID-enabled sites—would make Vidoop ImageShield about the widest deployment of OpenID-based authentication technology on the market.

And that, my friend, is a big win for Vidoop. And for OpenID.

For more information on Vidoop ImageShield, visit Vidoop. For more on AOL and OpenID, visit OpenID Central on the AOL Developer Network.

(And, as always, please feel free to use your myVidoop, AOL, MyOpenID, or other relying party OpenID to comment.)

[Update July 11, 2008] TechCrunch has picked up the Vidoop ImageShield and AOL OpenID story, meaning it might get slightly more pick up now. Great to see Vidoop getting this recognition on a much, much larger stage.

Vidoop Troop #3: Portland by way of Tulsa

Well, it’s happened quickly, but it’s been fun. As Vidoop has brought various groups of employees up for a tour of their new hometown, we’ve had the pleasure of meeting Vidoop Troops one, two, and—after this Friday’s Beer and Blog—three.

After that, all that’s left is actually getting them moved up here. And that, my friends, is going to a-whole-nother adventure.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. We’ve got new Vidoopers to meet and welcome to the Rose City.

Who? I’m glad you asked.

Nick Davis, Founding Software Developer

What? I’m involved in several projects, but tend to focus on designing and developing authentication solutions. I also work on some information security related things when not writing code.

How? Raised in Southeast Oklahoma (Spiro), I moved to Tulsa for college and have been here ever since. I earned my bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Computer Science at the University of Tulsa, and did research in secure operating systems (SE Linux) while at TU. I joined Vidoop as a founding member in March 2006. Outside of work, I enjoy hanging out with family and friends, reading, video games, biking, working out, and movies (especially sci-fi/cyberpunk). Recently, I got married to a wonderful girl named Adrienne, who manages to put up with my various technology obsessions (still trying to get her on Twitter 🙂 )

Links? Nick on Myvidoop, Nick on Twitter, Kernel trap, Bruce Schneier’s blog, FreeSCI

Questions about Portland?

  • Good neighborhoods to live for young married couples?
  • Good biking trails in and around the city?
  • What are the best “weird Portland” places that are unique to the city, and what things must I do/see to have the whole Portland experience?
  • What is the best seafood restaurant in the city?

Rachel Garrette, Marketing + Copy Writer

What? I write and edit copy, assist in the development/maintenance of our websites, create and maintain marketing videos as well as other marketing material, work with vendors, etc.

How? Born and bred in Oklahoma, I graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a B.A. in Journalism / Broadcast and Electronic Media. After college, I worked for a couple of years as a video editor at the largest independent sports production company in the U.S., serving clients such as ESPN, ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox Sports Net, Discovery, Major League Soccer, and many more. One fateful night in 2006, I met Luke Sontag at a concert. He pitched what then seemed like only an outlandish idea, and it soon came to fruition in the form of Vidoop. A year later, I finally joined the wild ride.

I enjoy music, art, traveling, history, puppies and fireworks (though not fireworks in, on, or under puppies). My favorite food is cereal. I love a good estate sale. I despise banana flavored taffy, and I’m the clumsiest person you’ll meet. I have an astute adolescent sense of humor eloquently coupled with a love for corny jokes. My Boston Terrier, Henry, can’t wait to explore Portland’s parks.

Links? FreeIndie.com, @rachelpalooza

Questions about Portland?

  • I’m having trouble finding a rental property in the NW district that accepts dogs. What gives?! Any suggestions?
  • Where is the best place to go for a run outdoors?
  • Where is the best place to hear live music outdoors?
  • What is the best place to get your hair cut?

Adam Kuert, Lead Web Developer

What? Attend a meeting, write some code, upgrade a server, accidentally delete a vital directory, restore from backup…you know, the usual life of a web dev.

How? Got a degree in Computer Science; realized programming was slightly more complicated than TI-83 BASIC. Ran my own company from 2 years, escaped to find job security, found… another startup. When I’m not coding, you can find me on the soccer field pretending I didn’t get cut from the team in High School. I Lived in Kenya for 18 years and I’m hoping Portland weather is just like Kenya’s: when it’s not raining…it’s perfect.

Links? http://adam.kuert.net

Questions about Portland?

  • Is the weather really as great as hear? Or does everyone trudges through the rest of the year just waiting for summer to return? [Editor: Truth be known, it’s really more of a “slog” than “trudge.”]
  • Do people actually ‘ski or go to the beach only 90 minutes away’ or is that just a sales pitch for getting people like me to move? [Editor: We have a beach 90 minutes away? Oh wait. I mean, yes.]

Steven Osborn, Founding Software Developer

What? I built the first prototype of our ImageShield technology and since then I’ve worked on nearly every project conceived at Vidoop. Currently working on alien browser plug-in technology to take over the world.

How? I’ve lived in the Tulsa area most of my life, excluding a short tour to Afghanistan. I previously worked for a healthcare software company developing web applications. I’m involved in just about every technology group in Tulsa including Tulsa PHP, Python, Ruby, and even .NET and Java which means I have access to more free pizza than any human can safely consume in their lifetime. Some technologies I’m currently excited about: Django, Python, Android and Mercurial.

Links? Steven’s Blog, Steven’s Twitter, Steven’s LinkedIn

Questions about Portland?

  • I have a 18mo son who was born 16 weeks premature. Does Oregon offer a program similar to SoonerStart? (They send out therapists on a regular basis to check up on his progress regularly free of charge.)
  • Are there any outstanding childcare facilities?
  • What are your favorite fun weekend family activities?

John Whitlock, Software Developer

What? Lead of the RecognitionAUTH team, making the backend service that runs myVidoop faster and smarter, then packaging it for licensees. I think in Python, write C++, and study software management.

How? I was raised in Arnold, just south of St. Louis. I begged for a computer, then a Borland C++ compiler, and spent my allowance on programming books. I got an electrical engineering degree from the University of Tulsa, because I wanted to dive one level deeper into computers. However, code mistakes are less painful than electrical mistakes, so I put away the soldering iron and stuck with programming. I worked for 8 years at a flight simulation company, helping to make pilot training simulators and learning
more Fortran than I ever wanted. When my company started to dissolve, I was surprised to find a web startup in our own backyard.

My wife Jennifer is a research librarian, advocating for new technologies to support the information needs of customers. She is also the Foundation Center Coordinator, helping local non-profits find funding. Our daughter Ainsley recently turned four, and confuses Austin and Portland.

Links? Ambient Librarian, John @ Twitter, CppUnit Wiki, ConfIdent Technologies Software Development Kit

Questions about Portland?

  • Where are the good, affordable, all-day child care centers / pre-schools?
  • Was is the difference between Austin and Portland? [Editor: We have better beer. Our parks feature green grass as opposed to dead yellow grass. And our birds know to quiet down at night.]
  • Are earthquakes a problem? Is there something we tornado-dodgers should do to prepare?
  • Can someone please babysit for Corin so that Sleater-Kinney can put out another album?

How can I meet Vidoop Troop #3?

Well, the place to meet and greet the past two troops seems as good of a place as any don’t you think? C’mon down to Beer and Blog on Friday afternoon. We’ll be back at one of our favorite haunts: the Green Dragon. That’s right. Not that other place. The Green Dragon. You know. The one where they have more than one bartender? Yeah, that one. Let me give you one more nemonic device to remember that: Green Dragon.

And no Justin Kistner, this week. And no substitute appointed.

Looking forward to seeing you and the last flight of the Vidoopers there.

Three reasons to attend Beer and Blog: Vidoop, Vidoop, and, well, Vidoop

Hey! It’s Friday. And it’s going to be nice. And you’ve been working hard. All week. What with having to go to Ignite Portland 3 and the after party and Backfence PDX. I would imagine you’re plum tuckered out.

You deserve to kick back and relax. And what better place to do it than everyone’s favorite Friday afternoon activity, Beer and Blog?

What’s that? You’re “thinking about it”?

Well, clearly, you need a little bit more of a shove. So, let’s give you a few reasons to attend, shall we? How about three: Vidoop, Vidoop, and Vidoop.

  1. Vidoop Troop #2. The next wave of soon-to-be Portlanders has walked uphill in their bare feet, all the way from Tulsa, Oklahoma, just to meet you. (They told me they were happy to meet other folks, as well, but they mentioned you by name.) And they actually had to fight their way through a mob of angry Tulsans to get here. They’d really like to meet you. And, you know, “hang out.”
  2. Vidoop is buying. What’s better than a Beer and Blog on a Friday afternoon? A Beer and Blog with free beer on a Friday afternoon, silly. And Vidoop is making that possible. But don’t go to the usual spot. Or you’ll be both lonely and buying your own brews. Head on over to Plan B.
  3. Vidoop is going to reveal a top-secret, skunk-works OpenID project. Seems Michael Richardson has been up to something at Vidoop. Something “that enhances the usability of OpenID.” And he’s going to be giving everyone at tonight’s Beer and Blog a peek behind the velvet curtain. What is it? I don’t know. But all you breaking news blogging types (I’m looking at you Marshall Kirkpatrick) might want to show up to get an early glimpse at some OpenID goodness.

How’s that for convincing? I think you have to be a pretty hard-headed hard-hearted individual to turn this one down.

So, I’ll look forward to seeing you there.

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