Re: Firefox OS Permissions

<manifest spec Editor hat on>

On Sunday, February 23, 2014, Natasha Rooney <> wrote:

>  Hey guys!
>  I was lucky enough to go along to the FirefoxOS event at mobile world
> congress tonight. I checked out some of the new devices and the apps
> running on them. One of the most interesting things was how the OS manages
> permissions. Inside of 'settings' the user can see a list of every app.
> When the app is selected the user can see the app author (this satisfies
> some regional legal requirements)

Do you know which regions? This seems strange as it's so easy to forge
(e.g., I can just put Microsoft as an author if I want). From the research
I did, I was not able to find any other runtime that makes use of this
info. It's only really used by curated stores. This is the reason why I
dumped them from the manifest spec: declaration of authorship is kinda
useless. It would be better to get such info from a digital cert. signed by
a reputable CA (as browsers already do with banking sites, etc).

> and a list of each permission the app is using. The user can then select
> 'ask', 'deny' or 'grant' for each permission. Below are links to tweets
> with pictures. I liked the solution a lot, and would love to know what you
> guys think!
It's quite similar to what browsers already do with site prefs. The
question still remains if the average user knows what, for example,
"geolocation" means in that context. Same with DNT... Don't track what?
What if servers just ignore that? Do users understand that it gives 0
assurances or protections? For both examples, there is no information on
that screen to help them make an informed choice - or what can happen to an
app if they change permissions. Also, I don't think that there is a way for
users to see when services are using a particular permission.

I wrote a paper about this stuff (particularly about geolocation and
permission dialogs) a few years back if people are interested:

> Natasha
>    Natasha Rooney | Web Technologist | GSMA |<javascript:_e(%7B%7D,'cvml','');> |
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Received on Monday, 24 February 2014 00:57:05 UTC