The goal of InCommon Federation is simple: Let’s help members of the community work together whether their team is distributed around the state or across the globe.
But it takes a village. Starting in 1998 with National Science Foundation and Internet2 member support, the community developed tools and services to make it easier and secure to access collaborations and services hosted elsewhere. A federation was one outcome. Software to make it all work for the participants is another.
Funding and community requirements for both have been done differently, but it makes sense to change that. The Federation and the software are intertwined and should be designed, developed, and supported together.
For three years, starting in 2016, the TIER program focused on developing and connecting key community-developed software components into an Identity and Access Management suite. TIER was funded by 49 campuses providing $3.6 million over three years, and focused on key software components (Shibboleth, Grouper, COmanage, and midPoint, among others). This support ended in December 2018.
InCommon has assumed responsibility for the continued development and sustainability of the software formerly known as TIER, now the InCommon Trusted Access Platform.
InCommon provided written communications about the fee change in January 2019 and held a webinar on January 16, 2019, to explain the need and seek community input. InCommon also held four open office hours over a three-week period in late January and early February.
After a series of conversations with the community and community leaders, the InCommon Steering committee recommended and approved an InCommon fee change at its April 2019 meeting, to be implemented as of January 1, 2020. Invoices with the new fees will be sent in early November 2019. to take effect January 1, 2020. These resources will allow continuing software development and ensure its sustainability. The fee change will also provide the resources for Shibboleth support for all InCommon Federation participants (90% of Identity Providers rely on Shibboleth as key infrastructure).
(please note - in the recording there are a couple of wrong numbers on slide #16 (the unified fee chart - specifically the L3 and L4 amounts for "current participants." The numbers are right on the downloadable version of the slides (below) and on the chart on the FAQ.)
TIER (Trust and Identity in Education and Research) history and overview
InCommon Trusted Access Platform (formerly TIER) software download page
TIER and InCommon Accomplishments Report 2018
TIER and InCommon Accomplishments Report 2017
TIER and InCommon Accomplishments Report 2016