Message from the IETF Chair

By: Russ Housley

Date: January 1, 2010

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IETF 76, held in Hiroshima, Japan, was a very successful meeting. The work of the IETF remains relevant and energetic, as was clearly demonstrated by the attendance of 1,106 people from 44 different countries. It was a pleasure to see so many enthusiastic people collaborating. Significant progress was made by many working groups.

The WIDE Project was a fantastic host. Led by Jun Murai, the WIDE Project coordinated with 19 other sponsors as well as the city of Hiroshima to provide a warm welcome and an effective meeting venue. Banners were displayed by the city to welcome IETFers. The enormous Christmas light display on the main street had been set up two weeks early so that IETF 76 participants could enjoy it each evening.

The mayor of Hiroshima joined us at the social on Tuesday evening, helping open a large cask of sake for all to enjoy. Wearing an IETF 76 T-shirt, the mayor wished us a successful meeting, which certainly came to pass.

The meeting site network was installed and operated by volunteers from the WIDE Project with assistance from the usual set of dedicated volunteers from the IETF community. The network was robust and reliable. In addition, the WIDE Project installed radio-frequency-identification readers at every microphone in the meeting rooms, which read an RFID tag in each speaker’s IETF badge. If the speaker had chosen to participate in the experiment, then the speaker’s name and picture were displayed on a screen at the front of the room. Many participants-note takers in particular-found the display helpful.

Since IETF 75, five new working groups (WGs) have been chartered, and two WGs were closed. There are a total of about 115 chartered WGs. Since the last IETF, the WGs and their individual contributors produced 412 new Internet-Drafts and updated 857 Internet-Drafts, some more than once. The Internet Engineering Steering Group approved 87 Internet-Drafts for publication as RFCs. The RFC Editor published 92 new RFCs.

Like at the previous meeting, one of the hot topics during IETF 76 was the development of tools to facilitate the transition from IPv4 to IPv6. The technical plenary, which featured a discussion titled Internationalization in Names and Other Identifiers, generated a lot of lively discussion.

I look forward to IETF 77 in Anaheim, California, on 21-26 March 2010 as well as IETF 78, which is scheduled for 25-30 July 2010 in Maastricht, Netherlands, and will be hosted by SIDN. Looking ahead, IETF 79 is set for 7-12 November 2010 in Beijing, China. The host is Tsinghua University. Scheduling information for the next IETF meetings may always be found at I look forward to seeing you at these meetings.

This article was posted on 20 January 2010 .