Re: prerequisite for change (was Re:

Phillip Hallam-Baker <> Wed, 02 February 2011 03:24 UTC

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Date: Tue, 01 Feb 2011 22:27:54 -0500
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Subject: Re: prerequisite for change (was Re:
From: Phillip Hallam-Baker <>
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What is wrong with using Informational and Experimental for cases where a
lowered bar is required?

If someone is proposing an entirely new protocol, a low bar is appropriate.
But that is only a very small fraction of the work done in IETF today. Most
of the WG effort goes to incremental refinements to existing specs.

If someone is going to propose an extension to HTTP or PKIX or TLS they had
better have a very good document if it is going to go through.

On Tue, Feb 1, 2011 at 8:39 PM, Martin Rex <> wrote:

> Brian E Carpenter wrote:
> >
> > The bar for PS has crept up, IMHO, precisely because the bar
> > for DS/STD has appeared too high to be readily attainable.
> Lowering the bar will result in the I-Ds on which the first rush of
> implementations are currently being based on becoming the PS document.
> But I fail to see how a lowered bar for PS would encourage folks
> to tackle DS.  Frankly, I believe just the opposite is going to happen.
> For many vendors, the working model is switched from "development mode"
> to "maintenance mode" as soon as the product is shipped.  And when that
> switch happens, most of the existing resources are reassigned to new
> features, rather than improving stuff that is in maintenance mode.
> And when DS/STD are collapsed into one and the requirements for the
> new STD are at least as high as for the old DS, then the gap between
> the new PS and the new STD will be much larger than between old PS
> and old DS, resulting in two problems: more resistence from early
> implementors to change the document, and less resources from the
> vendors to improve a document describing a product that has already
> shipped.  The ones who profit most from an improved document would
> be those vendors that haven't implemented or shipped yet, and many
> of these are not active in the WG or even in the IETF at all.
> The reliably predictable outcome of lowering the bar for PS is that
> there will be new PS documents with significantly lower quality.
> But so far I've not seen any remotely convincing rationale why
> the change of PS would improve the likelihood for PS->STD
> transitions.  Personally, I believe it will have just the
> opposite effect, considering that a non-marginal fraction of
> us work for large organizations and how these usually operate.
> -Martin
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