Spencer Dawkins said:
"to use the IRTF as a home for WG explorations, in addition to research"
Unfortunately, there are very few examples of the IRTF being used
successfully for this purpose. Rather than being a step toward WG
formation, the IRTF has often be used as a "consolation prize" for work
that was far from the level of maturity required for WG formation. Those
RGs often dragged on for years often with little impact on the IETF. The
goal of SGs is more immediate -- for situations where interest already
exists, but where 6-12 months of prepatory work would be likely to produce
a solid foundation for a WG.
I agree on the history here (not sure I would have said "often", but not
sure I know enough to quantify).
The IRTF may have the right level of formality and process for
investigations, but a lot of other attributes that aren't right, and (of
course) they may not be interested in playing host to these investigations,
at any rate.
I'm really struggling with the conflict between relatively unrestricted
investigations and relatively obscure discussions, and I'm not sure there's
a really good answer.
The SG proposal may be as good as a proposed answer gets, and an experiment
with a limited number of SGs may be as good a way to find out if the
proposal works as there is.
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