A reminder that I'm looking to appoint a postdoctoral research
associate, on a two-year contract, to work on a project to develop
highly decentralised models for edge computation, leveraging ideas from
named data networking and peer-to-peer to build new programming models
to manage edge compute infrastructure at scale.
The development of IETF standards takes place by a mix of plenary and
interim meetings, and continuous, ongoing, discussion on mailing lists.
We analysed the public IETF
mailing list archives to understand the role email plays in the
development of Internet standards, collecting 2.4 million emails, sent
by 75 thousand participants to 1153 mailing lists during the period
The IETF, as a standards development organisation for the Internet,
grew out of the original US government-funded project that developed
some of the early internetworking protocols. The organisation has
that this history has biased its participants towards "well-funded,
American, white, male technicians, demonstrating a distinctive and
challenging group dynamic, both in management and in personal
interactions", and it is
well understood in the IETF that this lack of diversity is
problematic for an organisation that tries to develop the Internet
for all its
end users. The community has made some efforts to encourage
attendance by a broader range of people. Has it succeeded in these
attempts to diversify?
As the Internet develops, it's natural to ask whether it's getting
easier or harder to develop new standards, and whether the complexity
of those standards is changing over time. In the following, we
show that Internet standards documents have become more densely
interconnected over the years, and are taking longer to publish.
The IETF is becoming slower over time, because new standards are
harder to develop when they must account for, and retain backwards
compatibility with, increasing amounts of prior work.
The technical details that describe the operation of the Internet are
defined in the RFC series of
documents. This series began publication in 1969, as a set of requests
for comment on the initial design ideas for the system that became the
Internet. Over time, it developed into the main series of technical
specifications and standards that describe how the Internet works.
As the Internet had grown from a research project to critical
international infrastructure, it’s natural to ask how the underpinning
standards development process has changed. In particular, one might ask
how the number of Internet standards being published has changed over
time, and how this relates to the development of the network.
Stephen McQuistin will present our paper on
Characterising the IETF Through the Lens of RFC Deployment at the ACM Internet
Measurement Conference today.
This paper examines the shifts and trends within the Internet standards
development process, to show how the time needed to develop a technical
standard for the Internet has increased over the years, and how those
standards have become more complex as the network has evolved.
Then, building on these observations, it develops statistical models to
understand the factors that lead to successful uptake and deployment of
protocols, deriving insights to improve the standardisation process.
Nominations for the IRTF Applied
Networking Research Prize 2022 are now being accepted, with a
deadline of 19 November 2021.
IETF 112 hackathon starts today, and
Stephen McQuistin and I will be participating to promote
on adding machine-readable packet format descriptions to IETF standards
Edge compute infrastructure is an essential part of modern networks,
but existing approaches to managing such infrastructure are complex
and do not scale. Thanks to generous support from Rakuten Mobile,
we're looking to appoint a postdoctoral research associate to work on
a project to develop highly decentralised models for edge computation,
leveraging ideas from named data networking and peer-to-peer to build
new programming models to manage edge compute infrastructure at scale.
I'm pleased to welcome Charles Varley who recently started as a PhD
student supervised by
Jeremy Singer and I. Charles is funded by Rakuten Mobile, and will
work on exploring the role of named data networking for network
operation and edge computing.
Please consider submitting a paper to the
IAB workshop on Analysing IETF Data. The workshop is organised
by the Internet Architecture Board,
and will be held online in the week starting 29 November 2021.
Submissions are due on 29 September 2021.
Welcome to Elizabeth Boswell, who started as a summer intern in my
group this week. Elizabeth's internship is kindly funded by Rakuten
Mobile, and she'll work on prototyping some ideas about the use of
gossip protocols and peer-to-peer communication for edge system
software and configuration updates.
The deadline for submitting papers for consideration for the ACM/IRTF
Applied Networking Research Workshop 2021 (ANRW’21) has been extended
to 5 May 2021.