I’ve been playing with an experimental UI for avoiding the NASCAR problem. The main idea is to be more open in the expected input from the user.
Nowadays we have several popular identities we use in business cards, e-mail signatures, presentation slides, etc. Depending on what I do like the most, and probably depending on the context as well, I may say I’m @luisfarzati. Or email@example.com. Or facebook.com/luisfarzati. Or just find me by luisfarzati: it’s the screen name I use everywhere: LinkedIn, Flickr, GitHub, and so on.
Most of these services have an open API with a public, limited access that allows anyone to know if there’s a person registered under a certain username.
Why don’t we leverage these APIs and let the user input whatever they want to login? If it exists as a valid username out there, we’ll find it and suggest it.
Feel free to try with many combinations. @twittername, facebook.com/name, firstname.lastname@example.org, youtube.com/name, WordPress blog URL, Open ID URL, etc.