In 1994, Italian physicist Cesare Marchetti discovered something: cities expand as a function of transportation speed. In short, “transportation is the lifeblood of a city.” Innovation in transportation has driven the expansion of cities—from small, walkable areas to the sprawling, car-based metropolises, presenting a challenge for urban planners.
Identity in the modern organization faces a similar challenge: if transportation is the lifeblood of cities, then identity is the lifeblood of organizations. And our organizations are not ancient, walkable Rome, but modern, sprawling Atlanta—with identities and resources widely strewn around the globe.
Like urban planners, we face a nearly-intractable challenge: how can we provide access to resources and data easily while still meeting the stringent demands of security and compliance?
Thankfully, there appears to be a solution for both urban planning *and* identity, albeit from an unexpected source: Ordinary slime mold. Aka, “The Blob.”
We’ll learn from this simple organism, describe how its simple actions create complex systems that solve these sorts of “unsolvable” problems, and see how the Blob might “think” about identity.