Re: [Gendispatch] Diversity and Inclusiveness in the IETF

Jen Linkova <> Thu, 25 February 2021 03:20 UTC

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From: Jen Linkova <>
Date: Thu, 25 Feb 2021 14:20:19 +1100
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To: Dan Harkins <>
Cc: Hannes Tschofenig <>, Fernando Gont <>, "" <>, GENDISPATCH List <>, Keith Moore <>
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Subject: Re: [Gendispatch] Diversity and Inclusiveness in the IETF
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On Wed, Feb 24, 2021 at 1:22 AM Dan Harkins <> wrote:
> > I just took a quick look at the document and I missed one point that increasingly worries me working in the IETF, namely the increasing number of participants who are not interested to write any code*.
>    That's a great point! One of the attractions (to me, at least) of the
> IETF was
> that it wasn't some guy with some slides and a story. It was someone
> with an idea,
> a reference implementation of the idea, and results of (partially)
> deploying the
> code and seeing what it did. That was very compelling. We learned things
> from the
> running code that actually helped improve the specification. We were doing
> engineering!

It's a very interesting comment, about 'not enough people writing the
code'. Since I've joined the IETF I've been hearing people complaining
about 'not enough operators here, where are they?'
I'm a network engineer who has to deal with routers and switches
running vendor's code and with endpoints running various OSes.
So while I have some ideas of what improvements I need from a given
protocol, I'd not be writing actual implementations, because I have no
places to actually run it in the production.
I'd rather collaborate with people who can write that code much faster
and better than I would ever be able so I can run their code in
production and provide some feedback from my operational experience.

>    Yes, there has been less and less a demand on running code (sadface
> emoji) and
> I share your worry. Not only are some participants not interested in
> writing any
> code, we are also coming up with work that does not require any code at all.

Well, plenty of work in the Ops area is like that but I do not think
it's a bad thing necessary.
Are you saying we shouldn't be documenting best (and worst) practices?
SY, Jen Linkova aka Furry