Re: bettering open source involvement

Alia Atlas <> Thu, 28 July 2016 20:42 UTC

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From: Alia Atlas <>
Date: Thu, 28 Jul 2016 16:42:02 -0400
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Subject: Re: bettering open source involvement
To: Octavio Alvarez <>
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Hi Dave,

First, thanks for starting this thread!

With the proviso that I haven't participated seriously in Open Source since
I was in grad school
and had a part-time job at the FSF, here are a few of my related thoughts.

Open Source covers a large spectrum from very dynamic and experimental
(which can be
using IETF work as a basis to work off of) to having some very stable APIs,
protocols, or
architectures which may be ready to standardize to enable even more work to
be done.

Similarly, Open Source projects can widely vary in governance styles and
whom is able to easily
participate.  While I understand that theoretically "anyone" can, that's
also the case with the IETF
and I think we're working on gaining a better understanding of the issues
that make "just participate
on the mailing list" challenging.

One of the challenges in the IETF is that most WGs are developing
technologies that has multiple uses.  Coming to an understanding of the
perspectives of all those interested in the work can take time and
discussion.  It's rarely the case that just having an implementation
(running code) resolves the disputes.

I strongly agree that it would be useful to increase the overlap between
Open Source communities and the IETF and that ideally flows both ways -
from the IETF as well as to the IETF.  While awareness of the different
conferences and projects help, one of the issues is that people frequently
need to have something specific to get done in order to get and stay
actively involved.  Similarly, fostering an understanding of why and when
the standards process is useful in Open Source communities may help suggest
when IETF activity would be useful.


On Thu, Jul 28, 2016 at 4:30 PM, Octavio Alvarez <>

> On 07/28/2016 01:56 AM, Dave Taht wrote:
> > At both ietf and BBF this past week a frequent topic of conversation
> > was how to get more open source involvement in standards orgs...
> Hi.
> Do you mean "how to get open source implementations of IETF standards"
> or "open source people gathered at IETF conferences" or something else?
> Thanks.