[e2e] Protocols breaking the end-to-end argument

David P. Reed dpreed at reed.com
Sun Oct 25 05:43:24 PDT 2009

On 10/25/2009 07:55 AM, John Day wrote:
>> The other was that the E2E paper was not principally intended as 
>> firepower in
>> the TCP/IP vs X.25 debate, but rather was more intended to be exactly 
>> what
>> the passage of time has shown it to be - a contemplation of the 
>> underlying
>> fundamentals of functionality placement, one which would be of 
>> lasting value.
> It certainly spends a lot of space arguing that point.  In fact, in 
> the period leading up to its publication what other issue of what to 
> put in the network vs the hosts was being debated?
I always find the logic of this sort amazing:  in my rhetoric class it 
was called "post hoc, ergo propter hoc" argumentation.   That is: 
because X happened and it appeared to support Y, then Y was the reason X 
happened.  ("this was the result, therefore this was the reason")

John Day asks the question "what other issue" to replace actual 
exploration.   Since there have been numerous times in the past when he 
could have just asked Jerry, Dave, or me, yet he persists in his belief, 
perhaps he has some reason to imply that we would not tell him why we 
wrote the paper.  In fact, we have made a variety of statements as to 
why we wrote it, in informal but public places.  Yet he holds onto a belief.

Now in some circles the desire to hold onto a belief about others' 
actions and motivations despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary is 
understood to come close to that of conspiracy theorists.   I don't 
understand Day's obsession with this point.   Since it has infected 
Richard Bennett's writings, and is being repeated to the FCC in policy 
debates supported by his "think tank" employer, it probably should be 
recognized for what it is: a false belief.

> As I said, I have always seen the e2e paper as an attempt to create a 
> more general principle to refute that hop-by-hop error control could 
> supplant e2e error control.  And by having a more general principle 
> that when other things were proposed for "in the network" there would 
> be something we could point to.
> I am afraid that your (and Abbate's) perspective on what game was 
> afoot was very narrow and taken out of context with the war as a whole.

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