Open source running code or closed industry code (was Re: "why I quit writing internet standards")
Abdussalam Baryun <abdussalambaryun <at> gmail.com>
2014-04-19 10:24:31 GMT
Firstly, IETF standards need to be more available to community through
open sources, specially the security standards to help the community
to avoid attacks from big organisations. I suggest that a new IETF
Area to be open for Open Source. We need to make comments on all our
standards that are not available open sources. In IETF it is still not
clear its standards implementation practices in the community, we need
informational documents that decsribe its standards' tests and
possible scenario failures.
Secondly, the industry is running codes (closed source) of our
standards but no much feedback about their performance in IETF. The
IETF should get more input from open source communities that can help
to make IETF more driven by user-engineers than industries.
Thirdly, both people and organisations, that volunteer their running
codes into the new IETF area will help to build a better Internet
future. If we get open source volunteers into IETF with their
input/code/documents, then we will get better performance in our
standards and in the future directions.
On 4/14/14, Alia Atlas <akatlas <at> gmail.com> wrote:
> On Mon, Apr 14, 2014 at 11:57 AM, David Meyer <dmm <at> 1-4-5.net> wrote:
>> On Mon, Apr 14, 2014 at 8:08 AM, George, Wes <wesley.george <at> twcable.com>
>>> I’m surprised that no one has sent this out yet:
>>> "Summary: After contributing to standards organizations for more than
>>> years, engineer Vidya Narayanan decided it was time to move on. Although
>>> still believes that these organizations make the Internet a better
>>> she wonders about the pace of change versus the pace of organizations."
>>> My thoughts-
>>> There are some nuggets of truth in what she says in this article, and in
>>> some of the comments. I think that the problems are real, so there’s
>>> in taking the criticism constructively, despite the fact that the author
>>> chose to focus on the problems without any suggestions of solutions.
>>> "while the pace at which standards are written hasn’t changed in many
>>> the pace at which the real world adopts software has become orders of
>>> magnitude faster."
>>> "Running code and rough consensus, the motto of the IETF, used to be
>>> realizable at some point. … In the name of consensus, we debate
>>> details forever. In the name of patents, we never finish.”
>>> "Unless these standards organizations make radical shifts towards
>>> practicality, their relevance will soon be questionable.”
>>> I don’t have too many big ideas how to fix these problems, but I’ll at
>>> take a crack at it in order to spur discussion. My paraphrase of the
>>> and some discussion follows.
>>> - We’ve lost sight of consensus and are too often derailed by a vocal
>>> minority of those willing to endlessly debate a point.
>>> Part of the solution to that is reiterating what consensus is and is
>>> such as draft-resnick-on-consensus so that we don’t confuse a need for
>>> consensus with a need for unanimity. Part of the solution is IETF
>>> helping to identify when we have rough consensus encumbered by a debate
>>> will never resolve itself, without quieting actual disagreement that
>>> continued discussion in order to find a compromise. I don’t have good
>>> suggestions on how to make that second half better.
>>> - We don’t have nearly enough focus on running code as the thing that
>>> to ensure that we’re using our limited cycles on getting the right
>>> out expediently, and either getting the design right the first time, or
>>> failing quickly and iterating to improve
>>> The solution here may be that we need to be much more aggressive at
>>> expecting any standards track documents to have running code much earlier
>>> the process. The other part of that is to renew our focus on actual
>>> standards work, probably by charter or in-group feedback, shift focus
>>> from BCP and info documents. Perhaps when considering whether to proceed
>>> with a given document, we need test as to whether it’s actively
>>> helpful/needed and ensure that we know what audience would be looking at
>>> rather than simply ensuring that it is “not harmful” and mostly within
>>> WG’s chartered focus.
I recommend to separate between designers and implementers. Each have
different challenges and different tasks, so I suggest different
WGs/DTs or a new IETF Area. The way IETF was doing in the past is
excellent process because we have designers interactions, but we need
more volunteer implementers and we may need implementers to have more
interaction within IETF.
>> My friend <at> colin_dixon pointed this out to me yesterday, and I've been
>> giving it quite a bit of thought since then (I have a nascent blog on
>> the topic of how open source and standards orgs might
>> productively/efficiently work together; follow up to
Thanks, it is an important draft for the IETF General Area to
consider. I suggested before that the IETF general Area should have
some WGs for important issues because the area is not performing well,
and many issues are not getting good conclusions by the community.
IESG will like to leave every thing general for only its input and we
as community have no input only if IESG decides. However, if we do
like you and write our own draft it may get attention from existing
participants, but who left IETF like Vidya Narayanan or may be many
others (who unsubscribed from IETF list) will not get chance to say
their opinion because there was no convincing community system for
general works in IETF General Area.
>> What I can say is that after seeing the kind of progress that several
>> open source communities make (they do epitomize the best of the IETF's
>> running code/rough consensus ethic), one does have to wonder if
>> traditional standards making is either obsolete or in dire need of a
>> make over. What is needed, IMO, is a reimagining of how the standards
>> process interacts with the open source movement specifically focused
>> on how they can compliment one another.
I agree with you, but IMO the way of doing that needs to be within
IETF organisation not outside IETF. Those open source community should
be welcomed to join WGs within one new IETF Area. Maybe there are
problems within IETF management with those communities management,
which may delay movements.
> [Alia] It would be very useful to have a functional model for how the
> two can compliment each other. We also tend to talk about open-source
> as a single monolith - when it can have very different models for
> accepting in changes, how and who runs the community, who is really
> participating (open source doesn't mean non-corporate) etc.
The IETF should be running its running code, some of community are
sending messages to WG asking of code sources but they may get no
respond, isn't that a shame of IETF to have no clue what to respond or
to have no document related to running code tests. The IETF runs the
standards for the community, so I expect the IETF to help community to
participate in its standards by making an IETF area available for
community to run the IETF standards.
> Some of
> what the IETF does is the architecture and requirements thinking about
> how the solution should fit in - while some of the open-source is
> about getting a solution implemented ASAP.
Yes, but after the IETF standard is published don't we think we need
to implement publicly (i.e. openly) that so the IETF vision is
targeted to make the Internet better place for users or community.
Does IETF leave the industry to manage/influence the change of
> IMHO, a spiral is useful
> with an easy way of interaction. With I2RS, as a WG chair, I
> suggested having experimental drafts describing solutions that were
> being implemented - but haven't seen any. A question is what is
> needed to encourage the interactions.
Mostly industries don't do volunteering open source only for specific
reasons, but people may do volunteering open sources just to fulfill
the IETF vision.
> [Alia] Diversity of implementation is important as is stability of a
> standard and it being understood how to change/upgrade for different
> versions. These don't come automatically via open-source.
IETF General Area still did not solve the diversity problem overall,
but for implementation diversity, IMO, we need a new IETF area that is
responsible to manage IETF open sources of its running code in the