[Mpi-forum] Feb 2021 MPI Forum Meeting Plan

Wesley Bland work at wesbland.com
Thu Feb 18 13:58:55 CST 2021

Hi all,

I wanted to give an update on the plan for the meeting next week after our virtual meeting yesterday.

The original plan for the Feb 2021 meeting was to be a Final Ratification Meeting (FRM), which would mean that at some point during the meeting, we would potentially ratify MPI 4.0 and elect officers for the next release of the MPI Standard. The rules for that are in our procedures document on our website and it turns out they handle our current situation very well. The relevant pieces are this:

At the last meeting, we made two lists of items that were not yet fixed. These lists are maintained on agenda and voting page for the meeting: https://www.mpi-forum.org/meetings/2021/02/votes <https://www.mpi-forum.org/meetings/2021/02/votes> 
The items that we knew about by the end of the December 2020 meeting - Everything on this list that was fixed will be voted on using the same rules as an errata vote.
The items that were discovered after the end of the December 2020 meeting - Everything on this list that was fixed will be voted on using the same rules as a no-no vote.
We will construct another list during the February 2021 meeting to keep track of remaining issues that we see with the document. This list is in the same place as where we tracked the previous work: https://github.com/mpi-forum/mpi-issues/projects/2 <https://github.com/mpi-forum/mpi-issues/projects/2> 
On a separate day from the items in #1 above, we will have a ballot to decide whether the remaining issues should cause us to delay ratifying MPI 4.0.
Without attempting to editorialize too much (people may vote in whatever way they think is most appropriate), based on the conversations in the virtual meeting yesterday, I would expect this ballot to pass. The ramifications of that are below.
If the ballot in #3 fails (saying the list of remaining items is not blocking MPI 4.0), then we hold another ballot to ratify MPI 4.0.
If the ballot in #3 passes (saying the list should block MPI 4.0), then the February 2021 meeting essentially becomes a Release Candidate Meeting (RCM) like our December 2020 meeting. This means:
The June 2021 meeting becomes the new FRM meeting for MPI 4.0
The remaining items list becomes the “errata” list for the June meeting and everything remaining on it should be addressed ASAP to allow time to discuss, merge, and generate a new release candidate document for that meeting (tentative deadline for PRs to be created would be April 19th, but they should be created and hopefully merged long before that to avoid similar problems for the next meeting).
Any new items that are discovered before the next meeting can still be added to the second list for a no-no vote.
A new chapter-by-chapter reading is not necessary or required.
Officer nominations will reopen and we will hold elections at the June meeting.

If we do decide to delay MPI 4.0, I don’t think the intention is to “open the floodgates” for every small thing we’ve noticed is wrong in the document. As Bill has said, we’ll never fix every little thing, so right now let’s focus on the major issues that would cause problems and keep doing the rest for MPI 4.1. If there are remaining issues from the previous lists that we’d like to address, go ahead and create the PR for them and we can make a decision later on whether to vote it into MPI 4.0 or 4.1. Either way, the PR will be useful.

In order to get through all of the things above and still have time to discuss the remaining technical issues, we’re going to have to be very aggressive in our timeline for reading all of the changes since the last meeting. As you can see on the votes page, we have 76 issues to be read. In an effort to get those done as quickly as possible, Martin and I will be going through the issues/PRs and asking for input from others as we go (but avoiding context switching from laptop to laptop between each issue). We hope this will give us time to finish the entire set of issues on day one or two.

If there are items that begin to have prolonged technical discussion, we will take that as a sign that the issue needs more discussion with the relevant groups outside of the full-forum meeting time, which is very limited. The interested parties should schedule a separate time to have those discussions and bring the results back in a future virtual meeting over the next month or two.

If you haven’t registered for the meeting for next week, please do so now on the logistics page: https://www.mpi-forum.org/meetings/2021/02/logistics <https://www.mpi-forum.org/meetings/2021/02/logistics> I’ll be updating the attendance page periodically, but keep in mind that the process is manual so it doesn’t happen immediately.

That’s all from me for now. I think Martin had some more thoughts about what to do with the remaining technical items that he’ll address in another email.

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