IETF mission (RE: pausable explanation for the Document Series)

Brian E Carpenter brian at
Fri Jun 6 14:50:22 CEST 2003

john.loughney at wrote:
> Hi Charles,
> > I also wholeheartedly support the inclusion of an applicability
> > statement whenever it makes sense.  However, I also suggest that
> > the protocol SHOULD (within engineering discretion) not intentionally
> > restrict its applcability to the situations delineated in the
> > applicability statement.
> >
> > I would restate Postel's maxim:
> >
> > Be conservative in the claimed applicability, but generous
> > in the potential applicability.
> What I am concerned about is there seems to be a movement to
> make a super-PS, one which would be the equavalent of a DS
> & have no bugs.  I am not sure of the feasibility of this,
> but I have noticed that simple protocol documents are getting
> overloaded with a lot of applicability info, deployment concerns,
> best practices and implementation guides.  Somehow, I think
> overloading a single document with this info, is not a
> reciepe for success.

In any case, since we don't actually use the complexity we
already have (3 grades of standard), the need is clearly to
*simplify* the document scheme, not to complicate it. My thinking
is getting more radical the longer this discussion continues. Let's
think seriously about

 Problem: the 3 step standards track is largely fictional

and possible solutions along the lines of

 Solution: let's scrap it and have all "standards" RFCs as a single level
 (with recycling in grade for corrections/updates).


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