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Like other flexible objects, the public key infrastructure sacrifices some utility in trying to be all things to all people. Mainly, PKI's generic, all-purpose identity certificates fall short of what the marketplace demands, forcing vendors to develop more economically efficient, useful, and imaginative business models. Thus, we must adapt the PKI design to the real world rather than trying to constrain the real world to match the PKI. A variety of alternative approaches, ranging from simple workarounds to designing the application to sidestep PKI's shortcomings entirely, can help solve the problems inherent in the standard X.509 model.
Despite an original design that failed to address the marketplace's needs, the use of innovative public key infrastructure models can make the technology meet today's requirements.