Re: Idea for a process experiment to reward running code...

Barry Leiba <barryleiba@computer.org> Sun, 02 December 2012 00:22 UTC

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Subject: Re: Idea for a process experiment to reward running code...
From: Barry Leiba <barryleiba@computer.org>
To: Stephen Farrell <stephen.farrell@cs.tcd.ie>
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>> I have a serious problem with the premise of the proposal.
>>
>> The short version is that if the process we're talking about is
>> useful, we should not shortcut it as a "reward" for anything.
>
> I disagree. The process is neither useful nor just a PITA. Its both,
> depending on what document and point of view you pick. So yours is
> a false dichotomy I think. And even the process now were useful 100%
> of the time, shortcutting it might still be an improvement. So I just
> don't think you have a winning argument based on logic.

Let me try saying it again, with different phrasing:
If, for any particular document, what you propose is the right way to
handle that document, that handling should not be handed out as a
"reward".  And if, for that document, this is *not* the right way to
handle it, it's a bad idea to do so anyway.

>>    1.  Working group last call (WGLC), IETF last call (IETF-LC) and Area
>>        Director (AD) review all run in parallel over the same two-week
>>        period.
>>
>> Note that WGLC is not a part of our formal process,
>
> Whatever. Its a reality.

No, Stephen, this isn't a "whatever".  You're proposing an experiment
for changing process.  I'm reminding you that what you're proposing is
not a change in formal process, but something you can do *right now*,
today, if you and a WGC want to.  Please don't dismiss that with
"Whatever."

>> and that AD
>> Evaluation can take as little time as it takes for the responsible AD
>> to click the "Go directly to Last Call Requested" button in the
>> datatracker.
>
> Or longer. Much longer sometimes if an AD is slow or
> authors need to re-spin and are slow. Both happen.

You're entirely missing the point: of *course* it *can* take longer.
My point is that it already doesn't have to, if the WGC and the
responsible AD agree that it shouldn't.

> What's wrong with doing the experiment and finding out if its
> better, worse or not detectably different?

Nothing: you didn't respond to my final sentence, which I'll repeat here:

>> Just tell all your WGCs that they can skip WGLC, and you'll send their
>> docs straight into Last Call as soon as you get them.

> I, and I believe lots of us, do want to encourage running code
> more than now. This is one attempt to help with that. Why not
> try it and see?

Because as a "reward" for claiming to have running code, I think it's
a terrible idea.  As a way of handling the process for documents where
it makes sense to, I think it's fine.  If you want the criteria for
your WGs to be "You have to have running code," knock yourself out.
Any other ADs who want to do it that way can join you.  If you want to
codify that for everyone, I think you need to do a lot more in the
line of criteria for adequate implementations, and so on.  If I spend
half a day knocking out some crappy untested code, is that good
enough?  If not, how much testing does it need?  I'm pretty sure we
don't want to go there.

Barry