I didn't realize when I asked for how people handled a mathematical

function for billing purposes, that the results would be more interesting

to a socialogist than a network provider. I figured

How do you (not how do I)...

would be pretty specific, but apparently I underestimated the interesting

ways that would be misread.

7 people wrote me with exactly the answers to the questions I asked. Nice.

7 people wrote to tell me how to calculate 95th percentile, but didn't

include answers to any of the questions I asked.

* On reply/request 5 of them did eventually answer the questions

4 people wrote to tell me how to calculate 95th percentile, but did

remember to answer the questions I asked.

2 people wrote to tell me I was doing it wrong, and that I didn't

understand what 95th percentile was.

* Both of them eventually admitted that they don't work in a place

which calculates 95th percentile for their customers.

The remainder of my 20 samples were offlist queries/conversations with other

providers.

Some rough statistics from an admittedly small sample:

1/3 of the nanog repliers understood the question and knew how to answer

it. Hmmm. Nanog clue level is definitely improving.

All but three of the people who tried to teach me how to calculate 95th

percentile were polite and clueful when I reminded them that I wanted the

math, not a tutorial. A couple of misunderstanding actually wandered off

into statistical analysis ramblings which was an amusing offset to the

next set.

Only three of the people insisted on telling me I was doing it wrong

(never posted how we were doing it in the first place, so this was amusing)

and tried to clue by four me into their approach.

2 did the math wrong in their long rants sent back to me

1 tried to convince me that modern equipment can't handle being sampled

more often than every 5 minutes.

And all three that tried to argue with me showed in their analysis that

they don't deal with anything approaching 100Mb peering, nevermind 1g or 10g.

And for those of you who can count, yes, one of the people who tried to

teach me how to calculate 95th percentile didn't respond back either

positively or negatively when I tried to remind him of the questions asked,

and one was rude. (I don't blame him, after the 10th or so reply I was too)

For statistical analysis:

2 women responded. Unfortunately one of them disagreed with a male

counterpart from the same company and when I asked them to clarify it turns

out the guy was right. (the girl's math was excellent, but based on an

incorrect assumption. stereotype reversal in action)