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Re: I will work on Delta-V

From: Keith Moore <moore@cs.utk.edu>
Date: Tue, 20 Jul 1999 11:28:33 -0400
Message-Id: <199907201528.LAA13752@astro.cs.utk.edu>
To: Jim Whitehead <ejw@ics.uci.edu>
cc: Keith Moore <moore@cs.utk.edu>, ietf-dav-versioning@w3.org, WebDAV WG <w3c-dist-auth@w3.org>

The purpose of a BOF is to determine whether there is sufficient 
interest in forming a working group.  When I ask for a show of
hands of those interested in doing work, and only six people
raise their hands, this is not a good sign.  It raises the question
not only as to whether there are enough people to do the work,
but also as to whether the BOF has attracted the right constituency.

When a group that isn't yet chartered claims to have not only a
design team but an already mature design, this is not a good sign.
To me the fact that the WebDAV group did not get versioning done 
within its alloted timeframe may be an indicator either that the 
group was spread too thin, and/or that it did not have the right 
constituency to work on versioning.  Regardless, the advantage of 
a new group is that it attracts new blood, and that it allows
the participants of a new group to make a fresh start.  That does 
not mean that prior art should be ignored or discarded, but neither 
should the leaders of the group assume a priori that it will be used.

I'm also concerned that people seem to assume that it's appropriate 
to do most of this group's work in design teams, and/or in face-to-face 
meetings outside of IETF.  Unless such meetings are approved in advance
by the area directors, and the other announcement and reporting 
requirements are met, this is a process violation.  Numerous groups have
been violating these rules, and it should be very clear that this will
not be tolerated in the future.

I am certainly among those who believe that web document management
will be hugely valuable, and I certainly want to see this work happen.  
All I have asked for is evidence that a sufficient number of people 
are willing to do the work (by having them send email to me and my co-AD), 
and that the work represents a broad constituency of those interested in 
web document management - so I can have confidence that it will be done 
in an open fashion rather than by a self-selecting group of narrower 
interests.  Considering the number of danger signs I saw in the BOF, 
I don't think this is an unreasonable request.  And I'm perfectly 
willing (eager in fact) to push the group's charter if the proper 
assurances can be provided.

Received on Tuesday, 20 July 1999 13:04:11 UTC

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