On Jan. 30, the Yahoo/OpenID URL will work with all OpenID-supporting sites, while the more conventional log-in prompt is expected to be operational on a few sites, such as Plaxo's, that are collaborating with Yahoo to implement it, Mata said. Yahoo hopes that as OpenID matures and gets refined, the authentication method will move away from the URL method and toward the conventional log-in prompt, he said. Yahoo will put instructions and code on its Web site so that third-party developers can embed its log-in prompt on their sites.
Yahoo's announcement doesn't come as a complete surprise because signs that it had been working on an OpenID implementation had surfaced. For example, a short message in the domain me.yahoo.com indicating the company would act as an identity provider for OpenID was spotted last week.
Yahoo participated in the development of version 2.0 of the OpenID framework, which the company said provides new security features. Yahoo users who log in to third-party OpenID sites should know that the log-in process doesn't reveal e-mail or instant-message addresses, Yahoo said Thursday.
This story was updated on January 17, 2007