IRC log of tagmem on 2005-09-13

Timestamps are in UTC.

16:32:27 [RRSAgent]
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logging to
16:32:32 [Norm]
zakim, this will be tag
16:32:32 [Zakim]
ok, Norm; I see TAG_Weekly()12:30PM scheduled to start 2 minutes ago
16:32:51 [Norm]
Norm has changed the topic to:
16:32:57 [Norm]
Norm has changed the topic to: TAG:
16:34:22 [Norm]
Meeting: W3C TAG telcon
16:34:27 [Norm]
Chair: VC
16:34:32 [Norm]
Scribe: NW
16:34:37 [Norm]
ScribeNick: Norm
16:35:09 [Norm]
Date: 13 Sep 2005
16:35:49 [Norm]
Regrets: TimBL, HT, NM
16:52:22 [DanC]
norm, I'm curious how you sync your sidekick with the rest of the web these days. I switched from N3 rules to XSLT and hcard/hcalendar
16:53:50 [Norm]
It's only one-way :-( so I just grab the data, write it out as XML (not RDF), and massage it into shape. I have some special purpose readers that interpret n3-like comments and some microformated fields (like BDL-RDU/AA 123)
16:54:34 [DanC]
mine is mostly one way... I can add calendar entries with ...
16:54:51 [Norm]
Yes, you pointed me to that code, but I haven't integrated it yet.
16:55:08 [Norm]
I'd like to stop retyping travel itinerary appointments though :-)
16:57:27 [Vincent]
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17:00:48 [Ed]
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TAG_Weekly()12:30PM has now started
17:01:24 [Zakim]
17:01:28 [Zakim]
+ +1.650.786.aaaa
17:01:31 [Zakim]
17:01:32 [Zakim]
17:02:04 [Zakim]
17:02:44 [Zakim]
17:02:49 [Norm]
zakim, who's on the phone?
17:02:49 [Zakim]
On the phone I see ??P3, +1.650.786.aaaa, [INRIA], Norm
17:03:08 [Norm]
zakim, aaaa is PaulStrong
17:03:10 [Zakim]
+PaulStrong; got it
17:03:26 [Norm]
zakim, ??P3 is Ed
17:03:26 [Zakim]
+Ed; got it
17:03:35 [Norm]
zakim, [INRIA is Vincent
17:03:35 [Zakim]
+Vincent; got it
17:03:40 [Norm]
zakim, who's on the phone?
17:03:40 [Zakim]
On the phone I see Ed, PaulStrong, Vincent, Norm
17:04:16 [Zakim]
17:04:19 [Norm]
Partial regrets: Roy
17:04:38 [Norm]
zakim, who's here?
17:04:38 [Zakim]
On the phone I see Ed, PaulStrong, Vincent, Norm, DanC
17:04:39 [Zakim]
On IRC I see Ed, Vincent, RRSAgent, Zakim, Norm, DanC
17:05:01 [Norm]
17:05:12 [Norm]
Topic: Administrivia
17:05:45 [Norm]
Most of today is for GRID discussions
17:05:59 [Norm]
Accept minutes of last telcon:
17:06:18 [Norm]
17:06:22 [DanC]
(they still say "DRAFT". ah.)
17:06:31 [Norm]
Topic: Discussion of GRID
17:06:38 [Norm]
Thanks to Paul Strong for joining us
17:06:53 [Norm]
This is an informal discussion of GRID and it's connection to the Web
17:08:50 [Norm]
Paul: Paul Strong is a Systems Architect at Sun. Works in the N1 product group. N1 is a suite of products that leverage the GRID
17:09:08 [Norm]
...Grid is a somewhat ambiguous term being widely used by vendors
17:09:31 [Norm]
...Within N1, I've been working on products for about five years. Mostly working on data center and enterprise applications
17:10:16 [Norm]
...Recommends July issue of ACM [scribe missed]
17:10:57 [Norm]
...GRID is a view of the networking infrastructure
17:11:15 [Norm]
...It's a view of computing resources that are pervasive. It's more about the platform than the end-user applicatoins
17:11:28 [DanC]
(hm... Sun N1 Grid Engine 6 ... seems to be a hunk of hardware. I thought maybe N1 was a service.)
17:12:07 [Norm]
...GRID really is about recognizing two trends: growth in network bandwidth, and network distributed services
17:12:36 [Norm]
Paul: GRID platform offers scalability, redundancy, ...
17:13:36 [Norm]
Paul: Needs services for distributing and managing work loads
17:13:54 [Norm]
...Analagous to an electrical grid, in the sense that it's pervasive and more-or-less uniform
17:14:01 [DanC]
(hmm... "The SETI@home project, launched in 1999, is a widely-known example of a simple grid computing project." )
17:14:11 [Zakim]
17:14:34 [Norm]
DanC: Sun N1 Grid seems to be a hunk of hardware...
17:14:41 [dorchard]
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17:14:46 [Norm]
Paul: The N1 products are a mixture of both hardware and services
17:15:09 [Norm]
Paul: Software is a meta-operating environment. Those products are called N1
17:15:42 [Norm]
...They're closely tied to a set of hardware to run them on at Sun. The result is an integrated set of components. You no longer care about individual servers or OS instances.
17:15:55 [Norm]
DanC: So if I buy a chunk of N1, do I get CPU hours or a box?
17:16:23 [Norm]
Paul: It depends what you want, you can buy time on our GRID, or buy hardware and setup your own
17:16:56 [Norm]
Paul: An example of a GRID application is SETI@Home
17:17:17 [Norm]
...The use of the term GRID was prevelant initially in scientific and academic community.
17:17:28 [Norm]
...In the commercial space, rendering and simulation applications
17:17:49 [Norm]
...The software that allows that workload to be distributed/managed/aggregated is the middleware, integration layer that is the meta-operating environment
17:18:26 [Norm]
DanC: Is it a style of computing, or is it technical standards that you could interoperate with?
17:18:30 [Norm]
Paul: It's some of both
17:18:49 [Norm]
DanC: Does SETI@Home conform?
17:18:56 [Norm]
Paul: No, it predates them. The context is still being refined.
17:19:11 [Norm]
Paul: There are a couple of consortia working on this: The Global Grid Forum
17:19:28 [Norm]
...There's The Enterprise GRID Alliance, focused on driving GRID adoption within enterprises
17:19:45 [DanC]
( doesn't seem to mention The Enterprise GRID Alliance )
17:19:52 [Norm]
Paul: To get the GRID used in less compute-intensive environments
17:20:08 [DanC]
-> Enterprise GRID Alliance
17:20:49 [Norm]
Paul: discusses benefits of GRID: ability to manage pools of resources; a mutable, dynamic space
17:21:43 [Norm]
Paul: reiterates the goal of treating these things holistically...
17:22:18 [DanC]
(EJB and J2... missed. hmm... I was starting to understand...)
17:22:20 [Norm]
Paul: workload management, mechanisms for monitoring, managing, controlling processes
17:23:02 [Norm]
Paul: Users need to be able to combine a heterogenous set of products and services together
17:23:17 [Norm]
Paul: Standards are needed to allow each of these components to be managed.
17:24:18 [Norm]
Paul: The term GRID has become very loaded.
17:25:24 [Norm]
[scribe lost thread]
17:25:55 [Norm]
There's lots of marketing in this space: managing complexity, providing agility, etc.
17:26:21 [Norm]
Paul: They're very similar, but they aren't identical. The GRID space is very confusing for many of the end-users and consumers.
17:26:45 [Norm]
Ed: GRID is a very broad term. Everything from SETI@Home to shared system resource pools that's more of a realtime virtual machine type of thing
17:26:48 [Norm]
Paul: Yes, absolutely.
17:27:01 [Norm]
Paul: One of the difficulties we have as an industry is articulating this
17:27:43 [Norm]
...It's going to take a long time to get to the end.
17:28:36 [Norm]
Paul: A lot of the technologies we think about today in the GRID space that do the mapping of workload onto resources
17:29:08 [Norm]
Paul: There are also provisioning services
17:29:43 [Norm]
Paul: What we're automating today is the provisioning processes, but that's just the beginning.
17:29:48 [Norm]
DanC: How is provisioning expensive?
17:30:10 [Norm]
Paul: Consider an electronic book store that has a web tier, a web service tier(?), and a database server tier
17:30:33 [Norm]
Paul: There's a set of database servers running on particular Sun hardware with a particular OS
17:30:59 [Norm]
Paul: The services layer might be BEA running on some particular Dell hardware
17:30:59 [Norm]
...Right now there isn't a standardized way to describe all these components
17:31:18 [Norm]
...Not only are the components complex, but there's a relationship with every other component already in the data center
17:31:35 [Norm]
...Today, people manage individual resources
17:31:41 [Norm]
...But those are increasing exponentially
17:31:56 [Norm]
...Because they don't trust management tools, each server is typically dedicated to a single function
17:32:11 [Norm]
...This leads to silos of services that perform single tasks
17:32:20 [Norm]
...This leads to waste and lack of agility
17:32:30 [Norm]
...It's very hard to track relationships between all the components
17:32:48 [Norm]
DanC: Are there any GRID computing saves the day stories?
17:32:57 [Norm]
Paul: There are stories that it's leading that way
17:33:34 [Norm]
...A lot of stuff is relatively static today. We have a tool that allows you to provision complete projects, like the bookstore
17:33:42 [Norm]
...It does all the work
17:34:06 [Norm]
...It typically pays for itself in six to twelve months. There are fewer unplanned outages because planned downtime is all automated
17:34:18 [Norm]
...It's more deterministic in production and is more reliable.
17:34:40 [Norm]
Paul: The developers can create the model when they create the application. For provisioning the test and QA engineers can test with a single button.
17:35:00 [Norm]
DanC: It has a little blinking light that says "you need a new database server"
17:35:06 [DanC]
17:35:08 [Norm]
Paul: Yep.
17:35:30 [Norm]
...something about ad hoc construction that seems at odds with the previous story...
17:35:52 [Norm]
Paul: When load gets high, the provisioning application will attempt to reconfigur (scribe ?)
17:36:31 [Norm]
Paul: Getting to the point where it all "just works" is going to take a long time. It's very easy to solve problems with regards to concrete things, but it's far more complicated when you're trying to model more abstract components (a server vs. a tier of servers)
17:37:24 [Norm]
DanC: It's all proprietary hings cobbled together, but Sun does have products in this space?
17:37:38 [Norm]
Paul: Yes. It's mapping workload onto resources with respect to policy.
17:38:17 [Ed]
HP and IBM do as well. Unfortunatly, they dont work together to create one grid, each has its own grid.
17:38:18 [Norm]
Paul: In the GRID world, we're talking about mapping services (a bookstore, SETI@home, etc.) onto a network of resources (servers, firewalls, etc.) with respect to policies
17:38:35 [DanC]
(btw, norm, re partitioning your ubuntu box, I highly recommend LVM)
17:38:38 [Norm]
Paul: The first things that get automated are the simple mechanisms.
17:39:10 [Norm]
Paul: There will eventually be a move towards automating higher order problems, such as managing performance and availability.
17:39:35 [Norm]
Paul: Today there are no single products that let you do all of those things
17:39:56 [Norm]
...Instead you get different products to manage different aspects of that. You get something that is more automated, but still has lots of human interaction
17:40:19 [Norm]
Paul: Sun has products that fit into a number of those spaces, but none are integrated togeher as a whole meta-operating system. No one's products are.
17:41:26 [Norm]
Vincent: What are the consortia doing today, what are the main standards under development?
17:41:49 [Norm]
Paul: Several things are needed
17:42:09 [Norm]
...A way of describing the requirements of the system
17:42:39 [Norm]
The Enterprise Grid Alliance is working on this sort of thing
17:42:43 [DanC]
q+ to ask if these enterprise grids have peers grids
17:42:46 [Norm]
Paul: And use cases based on that description
17:43:52 [Norm]
Paul: We're working on a standard set of requirements that we can give to other standards organizations
17:44:05 [Norm]
Paul: The Global Grid Forum is working on standards farther downstream
17:44:20 [Norm]
...A service-centric architectural view; the OGSA (Open Grid Services Architecture)
17:45:03 [Norm]
Paul: Because GRID was originally driven by compute-intensive applications, they have a lot of those, but they're working on getting more broad
17:45:27 [Norm]
Paul: A job control language is one example. How do I describe a work load, schedule it, monitor it, etc.
17:45:59 [Norm]
Paul: As you approach the more concrete things, you want to standarize them too. That's where interactin with DNTF occurs.
17:46:11 [Norm]
DMTF = Distributed Management Task Force (
17:46:14 [Norm]
17:46:22 [Norm]
They own the SIM standard (Standard Information Model)
17:47:17 [Norm]
There's work to make some of these things more abstract as well (pools of servers instead of single servers)
17:47:29 [Norm]
Paul: There are OASIS GRID/WS standards under development as well
17:47:59 [Norm]
Paul: You can look at GRID as the platform that is the network that is the web
17:48:17 [Norm]
Paul: There are other standards in this space too (for storage, for example)
17:48:42 [Vincent]
ack danc
17:48:42 [Zakim]
DanC, you wanted to ask if these enterprise grids have peers grids
17:48:54 [Norm]
DanC: Are enterprise grids mostly their own world, or do they have peers?
17:49:01 [Norm]
DanC: Does my grid talk to other grids?
17:49:34 [Norm]
Paul: We define an enterprise grid as the set of components (from disks to CRM applications) managed by a single enterprise
17:49:48 [Norm]
Paul: But each may have several data centers
17:50:17 [Norm]
Paul: In some sense, they're isolated in terms of management, but they do interact with the Web.
17:50:41 [Norm]
Paul: And one enterprise grid could interact with another (the bookstore grid interacting with the credit card company grid)
17:50:59 [Norm]
DanC: How will these two talk to each other?
17:51:19 [Norm]
Paul: The expectation is that we'd be using standard mechanisms for interaction
17:51:40 [Norm]
Paul: But I as the bookstore owner may have expections about the speed of service from the credit card company
17:51:52 [Norm]
...I may want to negotiate that quality of service.
17:51:59 [Norm]
...Possibly on a per-transaction basis.
17:52:27 [Norm]
If my customer is a real brick-and-mortar store ordering thousands of books, I may want a faster answer than for Joe Individual User.
17:53:18 [Norm]
Paul: We chose to bound the problem at a single enterprise because it makes authority and control simpler
17:53:38 [Norm]
Paul: When you're working across enterprises, then you have federation rather than hierarchy
17:54:25 [Norm]
Paul: GGF views its charter as everything grid, they see what EGA does as (an important) subset
17:54:55 [Norm]
Paul: They care about viewing the internet as a set of computers controlled by different organizations but on which I could impose a virtual organization
17:55:09 [DanC]
q+ to ask about job migration between, say, sun's and IBM's grid services
17:55:28 [Norm]
Paul: For example, automobile design is sometimes shared across companies because it's so expensive
17:55:52 [Norm]
Paul: From the GGF perspective, a virtual GRID could be constructed between these companies
17:56:14 [Norm]
Paul: Typically, the shared resources are segregated from the companies own resources
17:56:17 [Norm]
17:57:42 [Norm]
Ed: It seems like because the GRID is undefined, a lot of work is hindered. If it's more along the lines of a distributed computing environment, then I can see where that comes into play. Is there progress on defining either striations or a clear definition of what GRID is?
17:57:51 [Norm]
Paul: In terms of the word GRID, no
17:58:44 [Norm]
Paul: We're working on this to some sense in EGA by working on requirements. By being able to clearly enumerate and describe problems, we can guide GGF to work on a particular area.
17:59:31 [Norm]
Paul: A big challenge is identifying the set of problems that people care about most and the boundry between the components we care about.
18:00:05 [Norm]
Paul describes a number of things that can be virtualized
18:00:26 [Norm]
Paul: Having a model for these components and the life cycle of those components is critical for the standards bodies to be able to do stuff that isn't unintentionally competative
18:01:05 [Norm]
Ed: Right, and I guess that's why I think breaking the big problem down into smaller problems seems like something you'd want to do
18:01:38 [Norm]
Paul: GGF is more of a boil the ocean perspective, EGA is about boiling enough water to make a cup of tea
18:02:05 [Norm]
Paul: There is a working group called the SCRUM (scribe wonders about spelling) in GGF that's trying to look at these issues
18:02:56 [Vincent]
ack danc
18:02:56 [Zakim]
DanC, you wanted to ask about job migration between, say, sun's and IBM's grid services
18:03:21 [Norm]
DanC: If Amazon rented time on the Sun N1 thingy and some IBM On Demand computing, is it feasible to migrate jobs across those?
18:03:29 [Norm]
Paul: It totally depends.
18:03:47 [Norm]
Paul: There are certain clasess of workflow where you can migrate the work today. In a batchable system, you could move them around in stages.
18:04:21 [Norm]
Paul: Rendering would be a good example. I've got 20,000 jobs, I can send 10,000 to each. 3,000 fail on one system so I can migrate them to the other.
18:05:09 [Norm]
Paul: If you have shared infrastructure, you can migrate between transactions
18:05:24 [Norm]
DanC: Across the Sun/IBM boundary?
18:05:40 [Norm]
Paul: Technically, yes.
18:06:08 [Norm]
Paul: Right now a lot of this is really proprietary. It'll become easier after the standards are written.
18:07:28 [Norm]
Paul: People are mainly looking at whole data centers or whole enterprises at the moment.
18:08:28 [Norm]
Vincent: Is there naything important that you feel wasn't addressed?
18:08:28 [Norm]
Paul: I'm not really sure.
18:08:52 [Norm]
Paul recommends ACMQ Magazine again
18:11:09 [Zakim]
18:11:14 [Norm]
Most of the articles will be online soon.
18:11:14 [Norm]
18:11:14 [Norm]
s/ACMQ/ACM Queue/
18:11:17 [Norm]
TAG thanks Paul for a great overview.
18:11:21 [Norm]
Vincent: Thanks also to Norm for organizing Sun's participation
18:11:27 [Norm]
Norm: Thanks again, Paul
18:11:29 [Norm]
Topic: Edinburgh Face-to-Face
18:11:47 [Norm]
Draft agenda:
18:12:07 [DanC]
q+ to ask for abstractComponentRefs-37 on the ftf agenda, maybe
18:12:12 [Norm]
Vincent: Some time for issue status, then time for four or five issues to discuss.
18:12:21 [Norm]
Vincent: Return to the discussion of new directions.
18:13:18 [Norm]
ack danc
18:13:18 [Zakim]
DanC, you wanted to ask for abstractComponentRefs-37 on the ftf agenda, maybe
18:13:47 [Norm]
DanC feels more prepared to talk about abstractComponentRefs-37
18:14:29 [Norm]
Vincent: Try to review this over the next day or so and send feedback so it can be updated before the f2f.
18:14:36 [Norm]
Vincent: Any other business?
18:16:45 [Zakim]
18:16:45 [Norm]
Next meeting is the f2f on 20 Sep in Edinburgh
18:16:52 [Zakim]
18:16:56 [Zakim]
18:16:57 [Norm]
18:16:58 [Zakim]
18:16:58 [Zakim]
18:16:59 [Norm]
zakim, bye
18:16:59 [Zakim]
Zakim has left #tagmem
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TAG_Weekly()12:30PM has ended
18:17:02 [Zakim]
Attendees were +1.650.786.aaaa, [INRIA], Norm, PaulStrong, Ed, Vincent, DanC, DOrchard
18:35:40 [DanC]
RRSAgent, make logs world-access
18:35:47 [DanC]
RRSAgent, pointer?
18:35:47 [RRSAgent]
18:43:13 [Norm]
rrsagent, bye
18:43:13 [RRSAgent]
I see no action items