[RC5] Just be patient about stats....

gindrup at okway.okstate.edu gindrup at okway.okstate.edu
Tue Nov 18 14:55:51 EST 1997

     The mail list, like the buff-in files, must be organized as a LIFO.  
     :)  (Not really, that wouldn't work... (There was a time I didn't feel 
     like I had to add that...))
     I have no ecomment on the patience.  Many complained about how long 
     RC5-64 was going to take.  RC5-64 (optimistically) will take as long 
     as did RC5-56 (and probably a day or two longer).  Getting all 
     time-pressured now is probably foolish.
     Alternatively, many wonderful things were promised when we started 
     RC5-64.  Most of that still doesn't work.
     The Bovine effort was much more satisfying before RC5-56 ended.  This 
     was because there were very few outstanding promises and because there 
     was a gradual change in the "system."  The sudden changes are 
     disruptive and disheartening.  RC5-56 ended suddenly.  Big surprise.  
     It was going to.  Bovine had a couple of days to start people on the 
     recoding efforts.  And still it took up to three weeks to convert 
     RC5-56 clients to RC5-64.
     Bovine has promised too much on this list.  Some of those promises are 
     being broken.  Perhaps some of the promises should be rescinded and 
     effort on the core group's part more *visibly* directed.  I *feel* as 
     though the group has overcommitted itself to too many improvements in 
     the past month.  Some (oh, lord) reorganization and re-commitment to 
     the core process [ :-\ ] might be in order.
     v3 is several weeks away.  Pushing it back a bit farther might be in 
     order so that immediate problems can be addressed.  I know that 
     working on v3 is probably the neat, exciting, geek thing to do, 
     especially more interesting than fiddlng with stats or porting the odd 
     CLI option, but (and I am speaking by analogy) it is important to have 
     solid foundations before building a house.
     v3 is very much a house.  It will be a big and complicated structure.  
     However, the foundation upon which it sits, as far as the organization 
     is concerned, is that of a dedicated and (moderately) happy group of 
     determined users who will run the clients.  Allowing the confidence in 
     that group to erode will do more to destroy the effectiveness of the 
     post-v3 effort than any amount of horn-tooting about v3 before-hand.
     The problems need to be categorized into time frames.  Proxy and 
     perproxy errors need to be fixed *now*.  Client errors need to be 
     fixed immediately after that.  Feeping creaturism needs to be 
     addressed and made uniform after that.  Stats are important for the 
     "week" timeframe, but the clients and proxies are on the "now" 
     timeframe.  Remember, more people get their first (direct) impression 
     of the Bovine effort from the clients.  That impression should be 
     painless and smooth.  RC5-56 had this (with v2).  RC5-64 hasn't 
     regained this because it (apparently) hasn't been a priority.
     I say that this hasn't been an apparent priority for several reasons.  
     There was slow movement to implement highly successful clients from 
     RC5-56, although the implementation of completely new clients went 
     swiftly.  Client interfaces are not uniform.  Client version numbers 
     are not uniform.  In fact, v2 clients have been poorly represented 
     since they are "stop-gap" on the way to v3.
     v3 is (at best) several weeks away.  Perhaps to the RC5-64 effort, 
     several weeks is irrelevant.  To the *people* involved in the effort, 
     several weeks is much more important.  "People" seem to have no skill 
     at taking a long view.  The larger the RC5-64 effort gets, the more 
     this will be reflected in the effort's population.  "People" want 
     quick results.  This is why I listed the priorities as I did.
     Erroneous proxies result in instantaneous trouble for multiple 
     clients.  Erroneous clients result in instantaneous trouble for 
     multiple clients.  Erroneous stats result in "day-shaped" trouble for 
     all users.  v3 does nothing on this time-scale.
     It appears that the Bovine crew promised more than it can deliver.  A 
     prudent general would fall back to a place where he or she could 
     regroup and reapply force where it would be most efficacious.  I 
     espouse a similar strategy.
     But just as an army does not turn on a dime, neither will the 
     ever-growing "inner circle".  This "circle" is small enough, though, 
     that it can do a very good approximation.
            -- Eric Gindrup ! gindrup at okway.okstate.edu

______________________________ Reply Separator _________________________________
Subject: [RC5] Just be patient about stats.... 
Author:  <rc5 at llamas.net > at SMTP
Date:    11/18/97 12:29 PM

Anyone else find it amusing to get rebuttals before the original message 
gets to you?
Anyways, how about everybody just be patient a bit?  The world, and this 
project, could use some more patience in my opinion.

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