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Impressions from "Show me the numbers: Workshop on Analyzing IETF Data"

  • Niels ten OeverAnalyzing IETF Data Workshop Co-chair

17 Dec 2021

This workshop held online from 29 November to 2 December 2021 aimed to create more insight in what IETF data is available, what methods exist to analyze it, and what that data could explain to IETF leadership, participants, and researchers.

The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) not only shapes a lot of the data that is traveling the world, but the IETF also creates a lot of data.

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The workshop aimed to bring together groups that have previously worked on IETF data and those interested in using it. The workshop started with presentations that outlined different tools to access IETF data from different sources and presentations on many, different, tools to analyze the data.

Following sessions discussed analytical approaches and open questions to the topics of affiliation and industry control as well as diversity in the IETF community. There were also sessions that focused on the analysis of publication processes and decision-making as well as environmental sustainability. After a full day of presentations a round up was made to analyze what the main open questions were that emerged. These questions fed in to a two-day hackathon process in which participants worked on them.

This was the first time a hackathon was integrated into an IAB workshop, and we did so to see whether the ideas and problems that were identified were interesting and actionable enough to work on. The hackathon clearly showed that there were a lot of common interests between different groups that jointly worked on problems and further refined the questions, tools, and methods they were working on.

The final day of the workshop consisted of the presentation of the hackathon work, which exceeded many participants expectation, especially since the meeting had to be organized online due to the worsening Covid situation in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, where the workshop was planned to be held. The hackathon results showed how there is significant interest in the analysis of IETF data, and that these analyses can help inform the work inside the IETF.    

You can re-live the workshop by having a look at the recordings of the first day and last day and review the contributions. The program committee is working on a full workshop report.

As a co-chair of the workshop I want to say thank-you to the attendees and the IAB for helping us organize the event and to provide a place to discuss these issues and work towards a research agenda on IETF and SDO research. I hope all attendees had a great time and that we will all continue to work together for a deeper insight in the process of standard-setting. Thanks again!


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