Re: Initial draft of mux WG charter

Date: Mon, Feb 08 1999

Date: Mon, 8 Feb 1999 11:37:25 PST
To: Jim Whitehead <>
Message-Id: <99Feb8.113741pst."834439">
Subject: Re: Initial draft of mux WG charter


> Staying within the scope created by this charter, ...

Well, if you think the scope's wrong, we'd like to hear that too.

> A working group doesn't "standardize" a protocol, they develop a protocol...


> Is your intent to keep in-scope discussion of use of MEMUX over non-TCP
reliable transports?

Yes.  I don't think this amounts to much.  What I think it says is that MEMUX will presume its underlying transport layer can do certain things (bidirectional reliable ordered byte stream transport) and no more (I think MEMUX should not assume there's an "urgent data" feature available below), and be generic with respect to lower-level transport endpoint addresses (e.g., a solution would be to use strings like "tcp:host,port" where you might have been tempted to use just "host,port").

> Some items which were missing... A discussion of what is in scope, and out of scope.

I had a hard time thinking of scope questions that weren't already answered (well, at least, quesitons that I *thought* weren't already answered) by the existing text.  In particular, can you suggest items for an "out of scope" list?

> A list of deliverables.

Ah, interesting.  I was thinking of a 1-item list, containing the protocol.  I had thought that goals documents were not always involved in IETF work; that they were needed when the scope was sufficiently large and/or contentious that a separate document was warranted.  For the mux WG, I thought that it had been sufficiently thrashed out and agreed upon at IETF-43 that the goals statement in the charter would be sufficient.  Before IETF-43 I heard enough uncertainty about the desirability of a mux layer that we were thinking of a separate Applicability Statement (or something like that).  If the Transport people say they still want it, I'd be quite amenable to adding that.

> The "Goals and Milestones" section is pretty sparse and, given the level of
activity on this list so far, a bit ambitious.

Well, it's sparse mainly because I was suggesting only one deliverable.  The other reason is the 6-month time frame.  I actually think that's plausible in this case: the scope of the mux layer is much smaller than the whole of HTTP-NG; we've done a lot of work on the mux already, and think we have a proposal that's fairly close to acceptable.  Most of what I think remains to be done is to throw a small amount of stuff out; I expect we can decide on what and how to change in fairly short order.

> Also, while I think both you and Jim Gettys are very qualified to be WG
> chairs, I'm curious as to how you're sharing the chair duties.  If "the buck
> stops here", on whose desk does this sign sit?  I don't think this needs to
> go into the charter, but it would be helpful to have some public statement
> on this topic, so WG members know how the chair's role is being shared.

OK.  We discussed this some for the proposed HTTP-NG WG, but haven't talked about it yet for a specifically-mux WG.  We'll do that and get back to you...