[Int-area] Continuing the addressing discussion: what is an address anyway?

Dirk Trossen <dirk.trossen@huawei.com> Tue, 25 January 2022 07:19 UTC

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From: Dirk Trossen <dirk.trossen@huawei.com>
To: "Int-area@ietf.org" <Int-area@ietf.org>
Thread-Topic: Continuing the addressing discussion: what is an address anyway?
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Date: Tue, 25 Jan 2022 07:19:44 +0000
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Subject: [Int-area] Continuing the addressing discussion: what is an address anyway?
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Thanks for the great discussion, following our side meeting at IETF 112, so far.

I wanted to turn the discussion to a key question which not only arose in the side meeting already but also in the discussions since, namely "what is an address anyway?".

It seems that any answer would very much depend on the viewpoint of those wanting to answer the question (e.g., application vs network view). At different layers and different parts of the network, addresses may have different purposes and (desired) properties. Hence, scoping the possible answers is key, so let me try to do so.

Our discussion in the PS/GA drafts has been focused on Internet addressing, so scoping the wanted answers to an "Internet address" seems obvious. But our discussions so far also suggested that wanting to understand what we (as users) want from the network is a key aspect moving forward.

Hence, I would suggest that any answers to the question above ought to be guided by what we (as users) want from the network, e.g., in terms of reachability, privacy, security, exposure of desired capabilities and possibly more.

With that in mind, please let us know your views on this question in an attempt to tie our larger discussions back to the question on "addressing".