Users can share user-ids between systems using a password/login scheme. Anyone can use any UserName they like (as long as it is a valid LinkPattern). The User-id (a number, 1001 or greater) is what UseModWiki uses to distinguish users, and store their individual preferences. This user-id is stored in a cookie on your system, along with a random number to make it non-trivial to get another user's information. You can see the user-ID as the link title of your name on RecentChanges (as a tooltip message on MSIE and Netscape).
The new password/login scheme allows people to share a *single* user-ID between multiple systems (like work/home systems). One could enter a password on the home system, and then go to work and enter the user-id and the same password. UseModWiki will then send the home cookie to your work system, and the two systems will share a single user-id.
Right now there isn't much need for this feature, as there are relatively few customizable settings. You can simply have multiple user-ids and set each one up separately. Later, however, I have ideas for more interesting settings such as:
...and a few other ideas you might see "soon" (geologically ;-). These settings would be more difficult to transport, so I set up the login system.
Also, as a backup to the passwords, I may soon add an optional "email" entry. If you forget your password, the admin could look it up (or set a new one) and send it to your listed address. (I'll do this manually at first, and automate it if there is a need later.) --CliffordAdams
The EmacsWiki no longer uses any preferences stored on the server. The username is set when a page is edited. Once set, it remains saved in the cookie. There is currently no way to set the password except via URL hacking. Once set, however, it also remains saved in the cookie.
Having preferences is a sign of a non-HumaneInterface. It means that the designers have not thought things through. And since a wiki is simple enough, we should try harder to do the right thing at all times. Getting rid of preferences is an indirect measure of our success.
See Wiki:UserName for the original implementation.