My day starts with alerts from my phone, reminding me of my daily routine, meetings, events , and many more activities that make use of internet. For this wonderful and ubiquitous technology popularly known as “The Internet” to run effortlessly end to end, a combination of protocols are utilized.
Having started career in Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) technologies with protocols for Internet of Things (IoT), RFCs have been a major support throughout my journey. The initial understanding of all these mind blowing inventions, made me to go through Request for Comments (RFC). RFCs are worldwide accepted standards for the protocols. After gaining basic understanding of RFCs, I started exploring Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), which is responsible for developing and standardizing the protocols on which the internet runs. "Protocols" are technical rule sets -- explicit documents, procedures, etc., that allow computers and electronic devices like routers to talk to each other, share data, etc. While exploring different working areas in IETF, few areas like Applications and Real-Time Area (art), Internet Area (int) & Routing Area (rtg) caught my interest.
In many ways, IETF runs on the beliefs of its participants. The major mission of IETF is “to make the Internet work better". One of the early quotes about IETF from David Clark: "We reject kings, presidents and voting. We believe in rough consensus and running code". One more quote about IETF comes from Jon Postel: "Be conservative in what you send and liberal in what you accept". For all the newcomers, IETF offers its complete support through getting started with IETF course. The IETF is overseen by the Internet Architecture Board (IAB). Based on the area of interest, participants can join specific active working groups mailing list.
It was a great opportunity to be selected for IETF-99 meeting under fellowship program by Internet Society (ISOC). It gave me a great exposure by providing opportunity to attend the meeting physically at Prague. This opportunity opened doors to many more working group meetings and an opportunity to discuss with technical legends. As a fellow, I got Abhijan Battacharyya as my mentor who guided me throughout IETF and boosted me to kick start with a draft for RFC. IETF-99 provided a warm welcome to its newcomers into the family, I still cherish the amazing moments like spending time with ISOC board members and IETF area directors over dinner.
The first two days of IETF-99 were flooded with meetings and an extremely engaging hackathon which is undoubtedly one of the best experiences in IETF meetings. Bits-N-Bites is another interesting and my favorite part of IETF meetings where all the accomplished and ongoing achievements were demonstrated to the public. In IETF meeting, I came to know about India Internet Engineering Society (IIESoc). IIESoc is proceeding with a fantabulous mission towards the adoption of Internet standards in India in order to increase participation in IETF standards activities. The plan to achieve the mission is to conduct capacity building programs in the Indian networking community in order to provide technical inputs in the policy area, to provide a forum for computer networking professionals, academicians, researchers, network operators and programmers to discuss technical issues in an Indian context and to mentor people to take on IETF leadership positions. It is therefore acting as a nodal agency for possibly organising IETF in India.
After a successful meeting of IETF-99, IIESoc planned for pre-IETF connections 2017 on November 8th and 9th. I feel extremely delighted to be able to attend this event. This was the connection for IETF-100 meeting organised in Singapore on November 11-17, 2017. Behind every organisation and community there is always a great vision and mission. Similarly, the prime mission of IIESoc is further adoption of Internet standards in India by increasing participation in IETF standard activities and bringing all the academicians, researchers, network operators, and programmers under a common roof.
It was a great experience to be a part of IIESoc connections - a pre-IETF forum. First day was full of inspiring and informative technical talks from renowned speakers. There were several parallel tracks like IoT track, SDN Track, APPS track and Security Track. The first day itself filled the attendees with valuable knowledge in their respective areas of interest. There were significant contribution from India for IETF Internet protocols standardisation. To grow the community and to reach the mission, the whole team is putting their efforts to bring IETF to India in future. I feel grateful to IIESoc for taking this initiative and for the insightful technical awareness programme.
Second day was more interesting and reminded me of Bits-N-Bites of IETF. The day was consisted of hackathon, engaging interactions, knowledge sharing and RFC discussions. This helped everyone to get an in depth idea of IETF working process, involvement procedure and ways to contribute more and more.
Last but not least, the IETF world of “rough consensus and running code” is involved in each and every aspect of our lives. Let’s get ourselves involved to a greater extent and increase the contribution from India to “The Internet”.
“Learning will comes by contribution”
Senior IoT Design Engineer
Smartron India Pvt. Ltd.