Jim.Bound at hp.com
Sat Jun 7 23:19:35 CEST 2003
This is exactly what is happening in the IETF.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Bob Hinden [mailto:hinden at IPRG.nokia.com]
> Sent: Tuesday, June 03, 2003 8:03 PM
> To: Dave Crocker
> Cc: problem-statement at alvestrand.no
> Subject: Re: Document Series
> >Here is my own thought on useful stages:
> >1. Technical discussion and convergence -- form community
> consensus 2.
> >Technical refinement -- lock down the details 3. Proof of
> concept and
> >debugging 4. Stability -- community operational acceptance
> >The first is pure mayhem, and that's good. People explore, suggest,
> >debate. Eventually, they should start to form group preferences and
> >focus on getting the details worked into a specification
> that provides
> >detail which readers can understand and see as coherent and
> >for achieving a specific set of useful functions. Then they test the
> >thing, to see whether interoperable implementations can be
> >Then they actually use the thing, eventually achieving some sort of
> >critical mass of deployment.
> >Now, the clever reader will observe that we already have
> exactly these
> >stages. (Personal I-D, WG ID -> PS, Draft, Full.) Yet the
> latter 2 are
> >virtually unused.
> As you correctly point out the IETF (and as implemented by
> the IESG) is not
> using the standards process we have defined. It has been
> changed where the
> initial barrier has been raised very high at Proposed
> Standard and hardy
> anything gets to Draft standard, let alone (Full) Standard.
> I think that many of the problems folks are complaining about
> stem from
> this. It causes the IESG to worry about letting a document
> get to PS that
> is not perfect. This results in many detailed reviews and
> documents being
> blocked for what might seem minor reasons. This in turn
> creates a work
> load on the IESG that is close to impossible. The resulting
> delays cause
> frustration between authors, chairs, working groups, AD, etc.
> I think that
> a lot of this stems from trying to make PS the biggest hurdle.
> I think that if we implemented the standard process as
> written (and as
> intended) that many of these problems would go away.
> Perfection would only
> have to be achieved at Standard (and close to perfection at Draft
> standard). This would mean that problems with specifications
> could be
> found by people implementation the protocols and running into
> problems, and
> then bringing the issues back into the working groups.
> problems would be found. This would spread the load of improving the
> quality of the specifications to a much larger community of
> people than
> just the IESG members. Running code and interoperability
> would be the
> real test for quality.
> Enforcing the time outs would create incentives to move the
> through the standards process. I also suspect that some
> (perhaps many)
> specifications never really get implemented, so as long as we
> enforced the
> time outs as specified, that these would just go away.
> There is a lot of parallels with the multi-step IETF
> standards process as
> with building products. First versions of products always have
> problem. Most successful product companies learn that trying
> to make the
> first product perfect is counter productive because it
> creates long delays
> and the real test is getting the product to the costumers. Then the
> company really learns how well the product works and meets
> the market need
> (i.e., requirements). It through creating new versions of
> the products
> that problems are fixed and quality is improved. Companies
> that delay the
> first release until the product is perfect usually go out of
> business. I
> wonder if that is what is happening with the IETF.
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