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The GAMMA Initiative (Gateway API for Service Mesh)

Gateway API was originally designed to manage traffic from clients outside the cluster to services inside the cluster -- the ingress or north/south case. Over time, though, interest from service mesh users prompted the creation of the GAMMA (Gateway API for Mesh Management and Administration) initiative in 2022 to define how Gateway API could also be used for inter-service or east/west traffic within the same cluster.

The GAMMA initiative is a dedicated workstream within the Gateway API subproject, rather than being a separate subproject. GAMMA’s goal is to define how Gateway API can be used to configure a service mesh, with the intention of making minimal changes to Gateway API and always preserving the role-oriented nature of Gateway API. Additionally, we strive to advocate for consistency between implementations of Gateway API by service mesh projects, regardless of their technology stack or proxy.

Deliverables

The work of the GAMMA intiative will be captured in Gateway Enhancement Proposals that extend or refine the Gateway API specification to cover mesh and mesh-adjacent use cases. To date, these have been relatively small changes (albeit sometimes with relatively large impacts!) and we expect that to continue. Governance of the Gateway API specification remains solely with the maintainers of the Gateway API subproject.

The ideal final outcome of the GAMMA initiative is that service mesh use cases become a first-party concern of Gateway API, at which point there will be no further need for a separate initiative.

Contributing

We welcome contributors of all levels! There are many ways to contribute to Gateway API and GAMMA, both technical and non-technical.

The simplest way to get started is to attend one of GAMMA's regular meetings, which happen every two weeks on Tuesdays for 1 hour (as found on the sig-network calendar), alternating between 3pm PT and 8am PT slots to try to be as time-zone inclusive as possible. GAMMA meetings will be moderated by the [GAMMA leads] with notes taken by a volunteer. Community members should feel free to attend both GAMMA and Gateway API meetings, but are by no means obligated to do so.