Re: [108attendees] Successful IETF 108

Toerless Eckert <> Tue, 04 August 2020 22:25 UTC

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Date: Wed, 5 Aug 2020 00:25:48 +0200
From: Toerless Eckert <>
To: Carsten Bormann <>
Cc: Benoit Claise <>, Keith Moore <>,
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Subject: Re: [108attendees] Successful IETF 108
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On Tue, Aug 04, 2020 at 12:05:38PM +0200, Carsten Bormann wrote:
> > Granted. Time is always precious but not so precious as during a physical meeting week.
> Right.  I think the digital form of this we found for IETF108 is about right: 5x5x8 (5 days of 5 hours, with 8 slots in parallel) or slightly less than 200 hours of meeting time (8 not always achievable, e.g. during plenary).
> The 5 hour format of the day allows to get some work done outside the meetings (e.g., side meetings, preparing and digesting drafts and slides, processing e-mail).  Going higher than 5 wouldn???t work as well, as people would again need to process their email and prepare/digest materials during the meetings.

Wait until your time zone is not the preferred one
(not even disagreeing with what you're saying, just observing
 that we where not TZ challenged).


> > Most of the time, the speed of an organization depends on the number of meetings per year. With 4 meetings/year instead of 3, we know that IETF would move faster. 
> IETF moved from a 4/yr to a 3/yr format before I got involved.  It would be interesting to hear why.  Currently, 2 of the three meetings are followed by a regional slowdown (summer ??? vacation time in Europe, winter ??? Thanksgiving and winter slowdown in the US).  Going back to 4/yr might change the dynamics in other ways than just meeting more often.
> > To (try to) be on par with opensource projects speed, we have to adopt monthly or bi-weekly virtual calls. Whether you call that design team (with only active participants) or working group meeting (with everybody), it's a detail. 
> I???m not sure it is.  We have used periods of bi-weekly web meetings in some WGs and I can say these were useful.  Turnout is smaller than at the 3/yr meetings (which I will call ???summits??? for the rest of this message as ???face-to-face??? no longer is true).
> I think the summit + interims format has worked much better than I would have thought.  Summit = intense focusing all-week on IETF, interaction between WGs, new work (BOFs), some celebration of achievements, etc.  Interim (duh, we need to change this term, too) = focus on a single WG and their products, time to prepare/digest just that, getting all the small decisions that enable further process (which is why it needs to be a WG meeting and not a design team meeting).
> Of course, WGs differ, so some won???t get much out of these web meetings, some will work best with infrequent interims, and some will want to use focused, one-theme-per-meeting, but regularly timed monthly or bi-weekly web meetings.
> > Those recurring virtual calls is also what we have in most companies in our industry. With 2 possible outcomes. Either the project takes off rapidly, or there is a lack of interest/energy/time and the project dies. Both are valid outcomes for IETF drafts and WGs.
> For many WGs, that is a good analogue.  Make sure the meetings are not so frequent that people think they can do the work in the meeting, though (*); these should be prepared and post-processed events.
> Grüße, Carsten
> (*) The old adage of the IQ of a group being the average IQ of the participants divided by the number of the participants comes to mind.  People need time to think, digest, prepare between the meetings.
> -- 
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