SIGs vs WGs (was Re: [Hyperledger TSC] TSC elections: electorate should include SIGs and some other suggestions.)
Changing the subject to address a point in Hart's earlier email:
On 8/15/19 8:17 AM, hmontgomery@... wrote:
I sincerely hope this is not the reason why one would choose to start a SIG rather than a WG.
Working Groups should be thought of as our connective tissue between projects - the cross-project place where discussions about identity, performance/scalability, architectural concerns, learning materials, and even diversity & civility issues can be discussed and iterated upon without that discussion being owned by one project or another. In particular for anyone who holds architectural or product convergence as a priority, certain Working Groups like identity and architecture should be the place to articulate what that means, and then create specific technical plans that projects can follow. They only can serve that role well to the degree they are primarily driven by active maintainers and contributors on the projects themselves, but given critical mass there can be other participants on those working groups. Creation of any new working group should partially be gated by whether it's reasonable to expect most of the projects to be able to have people actively following and participating in that new WG.
Special Interest Groups are
intended to be more of a bridge to the outside world - to people
deploying our technologies for particular categories of use
cases. Those might be grouped by industrial segment, e.g.
"trade finance". Or they may be grouped by a broad set of
functionality, e.g. "supply chain", that is more of a recurring
theme across all industries than a specific industry. But the
point is that a SIG should be composed of both insiders and
outsiders - of both technologists close to what one or more
Hyperledger projects are doing, and of those who may simply be
"users" of the technology, perhaps even one or two steps
downstream, but who is willing to share their domain expertise
and involvement in active projects at a business level to drive
I think based on the above, a
SIG for academic involvement makes more sense than a working
group, as it's less about cross-project issues and more about
being a bridge to the outside world (and yes, helping those
outsiders become insiders). Marta has been managing our
academic outreach efforts to date, so I'd encourage you to
connect with her on ways we can make a SIG effective.
Let me also burst your bubble a bit - SIGs are expected to provide a one-presentation-deck-page report each month on their activities and accomplishments, which is provided to the Governing Board for their monthly discussions. Also, we (HL staff) are very deliberate about launching new SIGs - they can often take months to pull together the right stakeholder set, define the charter crisply enough, and make sure they are managed closely enough by us. So it may only look easier & quicker. :) But given all the interest in improving our relationship with academia I think we'd be able to move on this with reasonable expediency.
-- Brian Behlendorf Executive Director, Hyperledger bbehlendorf@... Twitter: @brianbehlendorf