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Re: Communication and Design at Guix

From: L p R n d n
Subject: Re: Communication and Design at Guix
Date: Thu, 17 Jan 2019 17:24:01 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/26.1 (gnu/linux)


swedebugia <address@hidden> writes:

> On 2019-01-17 12:10, Ricardo Wurmus wrote:
>> L p R n d n <address@hidden> writes:
>>> Guix is ...
>>> ... a package and system manager. (A seen previously, system manager is
>>> too wide)
>>> ... a package manager and machine administrator.
>>> ... a package and machine administrator.
>>> ... a package and environment manager.
>>> WDYT? If anyone has an idea, don't be shy :)
>> “administrator” is generally understood to be a person (as in “system
>> administrator”).  “environment manager” is just as vague as “system
>> manager”, in my opinion — “everything is the environment!”.  It only
>> makes sense to people who are already familiar with the term
>> “environment” in a computing context.
>> That’s the advantage the word “package manager” has — it’s already a
>> well-established term, for better or worse.
>>> I'd like to keep the "package manager" part as it'll probably ring a
>>> bell to any linux user and helps understand the not so familiar part
>>> (system/environment dealing).
>> Right, that’s what I meant.
>> We are underselling Guix, though, if we keep referring to it as a
>> “package manager”, because people’s familiarity with other package
>> managers may make them think in smaller terms.
>> FWIW, I’m with Ludo here with regards to “Guix” as the “single brand”.
>> I disagree with this part that George wrote:
>>> "Guix System" is a "bad" name for "GuixSD." Why? Because a new user's
>>> first expectation is for "Guix system" to refer to the whole of Guix,
>>> which we want to call "Guix" (referred to as "Guix Brand" below).
>> In my experience “… system” is not generally used to describe a tool’s
>> full set of features.  I think “Guix System” is just the right term for
>> everything that Guix generates or operates on with the “guix system” set
>> of commands.  “GuixOS” is, in my opinion, a pretty terrible name (I’m
>> also not a fan of all the other “…OS” names out there) and it needlessly
>> keeps the confusion between “Guix, the tool” and “Guix, the system”
>> alive.
> Interesting.
> So if we go with "Guix System" would the following sentences be meaningful?
> "Is your operating system running Guix?" (ambiguous)
> "Which operating system do you use? Guix System."
> "Are you on Guix System?"
> "Which version of Guix System are you using?" (we should really have something
> like lsb_release -a output this term)
> "How did you install your Guix System?"
> "Can I dual-boot Guix System and Parabola GNU/Linux?"
> "A: My Guix System runs Linux. B: Oh, I use the Hurd on mine!"

I like this.
I would go a little further in terms of branding. If we go with this, I
think speaking of "a Guix system" instead of "the Guix System" (if it's
a noun, it's a brand so we would end up with the same problem that we
have with GuixSD).
"a Guix system" aknowledge the fact that Guix is almost a "system
builder" (VMs, containers, computers, clusters?).

I know Ludovic wasn't fond of "system" but we could replace the word
with anything else if someone find something more appropriate.

Plus, I had sone thoughts about how Guix doesn't fit really well within
the usual "linux distribution" definition. (I think it's unfortunately 
disadvantaging Guix in reviews, for example.)
I find that speaking of Guix in those terms, even if it doesn't explain
anything, at least gives some hints. I mean, at some point, changing of
channel can almost be like changing distro...

> "I love the R.M. Stallman picture that is on my Guix System during boot!" :D
> (
> "My Guix System performs really well"
> "Since I switched my operating system to Guix System I have not looked back"
> "I love my Guix System!"
> "Guix helps me get things done instead of losing myself in the details of
> dependencies and stuff when coding"
> "Guix makes it easy for me to sandbox my browser so I can surf without 
> worrying
> too much"
> "Guix System boots a little slower than XX but it is worth the wait!"
> "I really like the roll-back provided by Guix System when I end up in a broken
> state" (geek version)
> "I really like the roll-back provided by Guix System when my pc won't boot and
> just goes black so I can't use the mouse or log in." (non-geek version)
> "I recommend Guix System because it makes it easy to copy your friends OS 
> setup
> so that you can get to all the fun parts quickly without worrying about
> installing this or that - everything is there out-of-the-box!".
> If not please comment.

Have a nice day,


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