Reinventing the wheel on a path to deeper learning

We’d be hard pressed to name many teenagers as thoughtful, curious, and
open to new experiences as Nate Sales. Now in his junior year at the Catlin
Gabel School in Portland, Oregon, he has already built, designed, and
engineered more than most people twice his age. Nate not only manages his
school’s robotics team, he also developed an app to track on-campus
movement during COVID 19, coordinates radio communications for the Amateur
Radio Emergency Service, is a Reliability Engineer at Fosshost, and sits on
the advisory board of the Emerald Onion — a Seattle nonprofit and encrypted
transit ISP.

We spoke with Nate recently about his path into tech, and his experience
presenting at a NANOG conference, where he was — to our collective
knowledge — the youngest to ever do so. What struck us most was his
curiosity and willingness to build, dismantle, and rebuild again in the
name of new discoveries and greater insights; an ethos all of us could
stand to learn from.

Read the Feature - Read the Feature

This is good!

I really appreciate it when younger people get attention for actually also knowing things like this.

If I recall correctly according to Mark Kosters at ARIN, I was the first person to successfully setup delegated RPKI in ARIN (in production) at the start of 2020 at age 18.

This is also why I think some of the discussions going on in NANOG atm are potentially quite good to have.
I have seen many of the younger people in this scene (including Nate) on Discord with regards to these kinds of topics.

And while Discord is not at all a replacement for mailing lists in my opinion, I think it’s important to realize that it (and other chat based things like it) have their place, especially among the younger groups.


Best advice we can all digest.

We can't fight what the kids are doing. They grew up with this (Internet) thing. Many of us lucked into it. The mindset and expectations couldn't be more different.


I'm not even "the younger group" anymore (as a nearly-50 gen-x-er) and
I still prefer chat for many kinds of interaction.

As for NANOG specifically, it would not occur to me to ask on this
list about beginner-level networking problems, and that's as a
long-time NANOG attendee and list subscriber. NANOG's environment
just doesn't give the vibe that it's a good place to start when you're
just trying to figure things out. The list traffic and meeting
agendas have always been dominated by either high-capacity or

Someone trying to sort out early questions is going to be way more
comfortable on a chat platform (that doesn't have a permanent memory),
possibly even in a channel designated for that kind of help.

I believe that chat / IM most /definitely/ have their place along side mailing lists. To me they serve different purposes.

IM(ns)HO chat is more real time, low latency, and low bandwidth communications with immediate gratification. Conversely mailing lists are decidedly not real time, higher latency, and higher bandwidth communications without the immediate gratification.

There's a 3rd form of communications that I've not seen (or missed) in the discussions, that being the NANOG in person meetings.

To me, all three forms of communications have their uses and can function as a compliment to each other. However, none of them are replacements for any of the others.

It's also important to remember that the types of information that pass through each mode of communications are different. As such, it might be possible to actually improve the quality (SNR) of communications in each mode if we gravitate towards the mode that best suits the need. Real time discussions of ongoing events (including the "me / here too"s) may be better via Discord. Summaries and longer running discussions are probably better suited to a mailing list. And nothing will beat in person presentations at NANOG meetings (or recordings there of).

Perhaps we should spend a few minutes thinking about what question(s) we're asking / point(s) that we're making.

Totally agreed.

What community people recommend for beginners? I do have a couple of
So far, I asked my friends in a round robin fashion to avoid burdening
one in particular, but having a dedicated group of people would make
more sense.

And even if I'm a millennial at the younger end of the range, I would
actually prefer a mailing list. (But feel free to share whatever you

I tried to find such a group by searching "bgp community" but it didn't
help :slight_smile:



The Program Committee is definitely aware of the imbalance towards complexity in topics. We have been working on some ways to try and bring back more ‘101’ style content to help fill that gap.

If you have any specific requests for content, or feedback you would like to share on what comes out, you can email the entire committee, ( That goes to anyone who reads this message as well. )