Flew under the radar a bit, but it is now official that Salesforce.com supports SAML for Single Sign On. This is great news for Salesforce.com customers – they now have an open industry standard for implementing SSO. The key benefit of using SAML instead of proprietary SSO is that with SAML the same solution a customer uses for SSO to Salesforce.com can be used with GoogleApps or any of the other hundreds of companies that now support the SAML standard. No more one offs for SSO.
In the bigger picture, the fact that the leading On Demand application has made the move to SAML is a signal that the SaaS/On Demand community is on the path of adopting common models for identity management and security in general. Really good stuff!