Re: Proposal - the future of Sandbox


Lee Calcote
 

I’m concerned that we may overcorrecting in this proposal, resulting in little value ascribed to the Sandbox project tier, detracting from the work projects have put in to reach Sandbox. If a goal is to alleviate the time-burden of consideration of Sandbox projects on the TOC, what are SIGs for if not to alleviate strain on the TOC’s time? Do we consider that lowering the requirements bars and thereby allowing any number of new projects into the Sandbox will alleviate the TOC’s time? Assuming Sandbox retains value post these changes, won’t there be more projects, moving more quickly (by virtue of being in the Sandbox), and therefore, ultimately competing for TOC time under Incubation review?

If a goal is to remove the unspoken marketing incentives for a project to join the Sandbox, what value does the Sandbox provide that a Working Group with a small initiative seeking a neutral home could not provide? Why would projects bother with Sandbox? Inherently, part of the desired effect of the project joining the Sandbox is for benefit of marketing/perception; is because the affiliation is considered to be mutually beneficial to the project and to the CNCF, right? 

What if we continued on the initial path of unleveling Sandbox entrance requirements, and to facilitate an uncomplicated process for very early stage projects to be developed within, another rung is added to the ladder of project tiers, called Experiments or similar?

- Lee

On May 11, 2020, at 1:24 PM, alexis richardson <alexis@...> wrote:

Ok so if that's the goal then age of project isn't relevant IMO

On Mon, 11 May 2020, 19:20 Matt Farina, <matt@...> wrote:
What are we trying to achieve with this initiative?

Sandbox is for early stage and experimental projects. In crossing the chasm it's the innovators (pre-early adopters). Or, that's what the docs currently say about sandbox.

Right now it's difficult to get projects into sandbox for a few reasons...
  1. They require TOC sponsorship. People need to hunt down TOC members to get time with them to sponsor. There is no clear channel linking projects with TOC members so it's an exercise for the proposed sandbox maintainers. TOC members are busy so it's difficult to get their time.
  2. SIGs perform an analysis of sandbox projects. They often add additional criteria on top of the TOC criteria for sandbox projects before they can be recommended by a SIG to the TOC. Sometimes fulfilling the extra criteria can be more than 100 hours of extra work.

These have raised the barrier on projects becoming sandbox level and made a significant amount more work for people involved. The goal appears to be to simplify a process that's become time consuming and complicated.

- Matt Farina

On Mon, May 11, 2020, at 1:55 PM, Alexis Richardson wrote:
What are we trying to achieve with this initiative?  How to weed out dead sandbox projects?  Let's weed them out. 

On Mon, 11 May 2020, 18:54 Matt Farina, <matt@...> wrote:

I'd like to unpack this part of the thread...

A much stricter requirement for multi-org governance as entry even to sandbox would help avoid project dumping by a single company.

Multi-org governance is a graduation requirement. Sandbox is for experiments and early stage projects. Adding multi-org governance would squash the goal of experiments and early stage.

if it has been around for a good few years already, and still has little adoption, it's probably either a bad idea, or doesn't work

This is a huge question. To start, what is "little adoption?" Incubation requires 3 running it in production. That's a metric.

"little adoption" gets complicated when a project is more of a niche, too. Cloud native has a bunch of niches. If only the widely used projects should go in that's totally fine. Just worth communicating. But, this is sandbox. Do we want sandbox to have usage requirements higher than incubation?

I wonder, if we say sandbox is for innovators (to quote the docs) that means a number of experiments and early stage projects are going to exit there. Can we say the experiment needs to be viable as a criteria and the TOC is the judge of that?

I'm skeptical on the "bad idea" part because that's very subjective. Who knows the technology, markets, and users well enough to really do this? It's a hard thing to do.

An experiment that's been running for years, has had blog posts, has had videos, and all that stuff but has failed to move the needle may not be a viable experiment any longer. It's hard to hear but it happens. This is different from the good idea or bad idea because it's not looking at the quality of the work but rather if the experiment has the capability to live on.

Bad ideas can catch wind and have life. Good ideas can die.

Plus, the CNCF staff has been doing work on metrics to look at project health. This may be something they can analyze as part of their work on the submitted projects.

- Matt Farina

On Mon, May 11, 2020, at 12:53 PM, Bob Wise (AWS) via lists.cncf.io wrote:

Don’t we want the CNCF to be a home for good projects, not just big projects?

 

A much stricter requirement for multi-org governance as entry even to sandbox would help avoid project dumping by a single company.

 

From: <cncf-toc@...> on behalf of Joe Beda <jbeda@...>
Date: Monday, May 11, 2020 at 8:36 AM
To: Liz Rice <liz@...>, Quinton Hoole <quinton@...>
Cc: cncf-toc <cncf-toc@...>
Subject: RE: [EXTERNAL] [cncf-toc] Proposal - the future of Sandbox

 

CAUTION: This email originated from outside of the organization. Do not click links or open attachments unless you can confirm the sender and know the content is safe.

 

Nit pick: “if it has been around for a good few years already, and still has little adoption, it's probably either a bad idea, or doesn't work”

 

There are many reasons that a project may be in this situation.  It isn’t just because the project is bad/doesn’t work.  Perhaps we should say that it isn’t a good fit for the CNCF as the CNCF isn’t just a way to get attention/marketing/adoption for a project that is otherwise stalled.

 

Joe

 

From: cncf-toc@... <cncf-toc@...>
Date: Monday, May 11, 2020 at 3:56 AM
To: Quinton Hoole <quinton@...>
Cc: cncf-toc <cncf-toc@...>
Subject: Re: [cncf-toc] Proposal - the future of Sandbox

Thanks for these thoughts, Quinton

 

1. Add some measures to avoid becoming a dumping ground for failed company projects. Even if a project checks all the boxes, if it has been around for a good few years already, and still has little adoption, it's probably either a bad idea, or doesn't work.

 

100% agree. As I don't think this is limited to Sandbox, I wonder if this would be better added in, say, the Principles doc, wytd? 

 

2. Add a 'public review' period of about a month. I think it's beneficial for the community to have visibility of what's heading towards sandbox, ask questions etc.

 

Yes, the idea is that this should be public. We need some way of holding a public comment period in a lightweight fashion. Perhaps whenever a form is submitted, it also generates an email to the TOC mailing list so that folks are aware and can reply with thoughts about it.  

 

3. The original thinking around TOC 'sponsors' (and there's probably a better word for them) was to have some show of support from the TOC for a candidate sandbox project (equivalent to 'yes, that seems like a good idea').  If no TOC members want a project in the CNCF, for valid reasons, then it presumably shouldn't be there, irrespective of what boxes it checks. I think you'll need some way to achieve this.  Perhaps announce at the TOC meeting the list of projects that have checked all the boxes (with a brief description of each) and are eligible for sandbox, and give the TOC public veto rights at that point? 

 

We're suggesting a simple majority vote from the TOC. This raises the bar in the sense that a majority, not just three TOC members, need to support a project, but hopefully the aggregate extra work for individual TOC members will be more than outweighed by having less lobbying to deal with, and it will be much clearer for the whole community. 

 

 

 

On Wed, May 6, 2020 at 4:38 PM Quinton Hoole <quinton@...> wrote:

Yes, this is very close to the intentions I always had in mind, but which I don't think were ever written down clearly, or particularly well executed on.  Great job ckarifying.!

 

Four suggestions: 

 

1. Add some measures to avoid becoming a dumping ground for failed company projects. Even if a project checks all the boxes, if it has been around for a good few years already, and still has little adoption, it's probably either a bad idea, or doesn't work.

 

2. Add a 'public review' period of about a month. I think it's beneficial for the community to have visibility of what's heading towards sandbox, ask questions etc.

 

3. The original thinking around TOC 'sponsors' (and there's probably a better word for them) was to have some show of support from the TOC for a candidate sandbox project (equivalent to 'yes, that seems like a good idea').  If no TOC members want a project in the CNCF, for valid reasons, then it presumably shouldn't be there, irrespective of what boxes it checks. I think you'll need some way to achieve this.  Perhaps announce at the TOC meeting the list of projects that have checked all the boxes (with a brief description of each) and are eligible for sandbox, and give the TOC public veto rights at that point? 

 

Hope this helps...

 

I can move these comments to the doc if needed. I'm not at my computer right now. 

 

Q

 

On Tue, May 5, 2020, 09:06 Liz Rice <liz@...> wrote:







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