Re: Interim meetings - changing the way we work

t.p. <> Thu, 26 February 2015 18:39 UTC

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From: t.p. <>
To: Mary Barnes <>, Joel Halpern Direct <>
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Subject: Re: Interim meetings - changing the way we work
Date: Thu, 26 Feb 2015 18:32:58 +0000
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----- Original Message -----
From: "Mary Barnes" <>
To: "Joel Halpern Direct" <>
Sent: Thursday, February 26, 2015 4:13 PM
> On Thu, Feb 26, 2015 at 9:57 AM, Joel Halpern Direct <
>> wrote:
> > One of the working groups where I have observed this is one where I
am a
> > document author and was an active contributor.  I am still trying to
> > contribute.  Minutes don't cut it.  (I looked at the minutes from
the one
> > session I participated in.  While they were formally correct, I
doubt that
> > they would have helped anyone not on the call actually engage in the
> > discussion.  As evidence I point out that the discussions do not get
> > followed up on the list.
> >
> [MB] Aren't these all management issues?  I would think the WG chairs
> ensure that all the key contributors are available. And, of course,
> should be adequate minutes produced along with action items identified
> I would assume those are taken to the mailing list and/or added to an
> tracker.


I have flagged netmod as both the WG that has produced the most
comprehensive documentation and the one which held the most Interims in
2014.  It is also a WG I have tracked since it was formed (but no longer

The most recent Virtual Interim minutes,
(which do give full names of the participants)  include

"  MB: I believe C1 summarizes how things work today.
  AB: Are we trying to come up with tighter rules for humans or for
      tools to take advantage of the tighter rules?
  AB: I am not sure YANG 1.0 specifies C1 explicitly somewhere.
  JS: Does A3 not follow from A2?
  KW: A3 is more a corollary of A2.
  AB: The high-level problem is how to create and maintain the
      information needed to achieve A4. "

and I have no idea what A1 to C1 mean; while the mailing list posts
have subjects such as

Y25 new solution Y25-02
Y59 action
VRFY :Y16: module advertisement optimization
DEAD :Y54: remove the advertisement of conformance information ..

There is a 60 strong list of issues identified by Yxx (not A1 to C1),
often with multiple solutions, and a finite state machine (DEAD, EDIT,
VRFY ...) with seven states.

The WG is progressing and will produce, but whether anyone outside the
core of about six participants, or even they in a year's time (the WG
tends to revisit the same issues every year or two), can tell you how a
decision was arrived at by whom, I doubt.  The mailing list is archived
but what else is?

as Joel said earlier

> >                                             But judging from what I
see, even an active
> > participant and author would have trouble if they could not make the
> > calls.

This is, for better or worse, the changing way of working I have in mind

Tom Petch

>         As others have noted email is not the best way to resolve some
> the more complex problems introduced in our technical work.  I totally
> agree about the timezone issue.  For CLUE WG, folks were flexible
> shifting our meetings to ensure an attendee in Australia could attend
> we were discussing issues to which he had input.  Note, that we
> ahead of time on our WG wiki what the topic for that meeting was.  We
> flexible about re-arranging those for the key contributors.  [/MB]
> > One of the other groups I follow, and no I don't expect the work to
> > optimized for a follower.  But judging from what I see, even an
> > participant and author would have trouble if they could not make the
> > calls.
> >
> > We claim that we do our work on the email list.  I do understand
> > phone calls and face to face meetings are useful for resolving hard
> > issues.  I am not saying "don't have interims".  But if one is
having a
> > phone call every two to three weeks, then the working group is NOT
> > conducting its work on the mailing list.  If we want to throw in the
> > and say that you need a higher engagement level to participate, then
> > should own up to that.  It will severely harm cross-fertilization
> > participation in multiple working groups.  But maybe that is what we
> > to give up.
> >
> [MB] In CLUE WG, we had weekly calls (if we had a topic identified
that we
> felt benefitted from a verbal discussion.  Again, I think it's a
> issue if things are not documented and what is deemed to be consensus
> not taken to the WG mailing list for confirmation and any additional
> discussion as necessary.  I still consider the work having been
> on the mailing list in that we posted links (or directly the minutes)
> the WG mailing list and when we added issues to the tracker, the WG
> notified. [/MB]
> >
> > But pretending that frequent working group (not design team, working
> > group) conference calls are a good way to work and consistent with
> > ethos does not match what I have seen.
> >
> [MB] I, of course, totally disagree. We should use all the
> tools available to progress our work.  I totally agree of the
importance of
> traceability in the email archives, which is why links to minutes,
> in the tracker, etc. ought all be posted to the WG mailing list.
IMHO, we
> would actually benefit from WGs actually using the wikis to more
> document decisions - it's a heck of lot easier in some cases than
trying to
> dig through WG or personal email archives.  [/MB]
> > Yours,
> > Joel
> >
> >
> > On 2/26/15 10:15 AM, Ted Lemon wrote:
> >
> >> On Feb 26, 2015, at 10:05 AM, Joel M. Halpern <>
> >> wrote:
> >>
> >>> I need to agree with John here.  There are several WGs I try to
> >>> monitor that started having frequent interim conference calls.
> >>> There is no way I can reliably make time for that.  The advantage
> >>> of email is that I can fit it in around the work I need to do
> >>> (including reading it during corporate conference calls.)  In one
> >>> case I have had to dramatically reduce my effective participation
> >>> in the WG because most of the work moved to the conference calls.
> >>>
> >>
> >> If you "try to monitor" these working groups, it sounds like you
> >> aren't an active participant.   The meetings are supposed to be
> >> minuted, so you ought to be able to monitor them by reading the
> >> minutes.
> >>
> >> Do you think we should optimize working groups for getting work
> >> or for being monitored?   Or have I misunderstood what you mean
> >> you say "try to monitor"?
> >>
> >>
> >