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Re: Proposal for a blog contribution on reproducible computations

From: Ludovic Courtès
Subject: Re: Proposal for a blog contribution on reproducible computations
Date: Fri, 10 Jan 2020 17:59:08 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/26.3 (gnu/linux)

Hi Konrad,

Konrad Hinsen <address@hidden> skribis:

> Here is a first complete draft:
> Feedback welcome, be it by mail or as issues on GitHub.

I’ve read it entirely and I think it’s perfect.  It’s a pleasant read,
it covers many aspects in a pedagogical way (if I’m able to judge
that!), and it always shows how these nitty-gritty details relate to
reproducible computations.  I like how you explain that it’s human
interpretation that leads us to split “inputs” and “outputs” into more
specific categories (I had already enjoyed that in one of your talks).

Minor comments:

  • You write “Build systems are packages as well”.  This could be
    slightly misleading: build systems are (1) a set of packages, and
    (2) a build procedure.  Dunno if it makes sense to clarify that.

  • In the ‘guix pack’ example, you could perhaps omit all the -S flags
    except for /bin, and mention ‘--save-provenance’.

  • Would it make sense to mention MPFR in the paragraph about IEEE 754?

  • Regarding ‘--container’, you write that namespaces “may not be
    present on your system, or may be disabled by default”, which is a
    bit strong; “may be present on your system, but perhaps disabled by
    default” would be more accurate.  :-)

> Also, what is the procedure for submitting blog posts? What are the
> right formats for text and graphics?

The format we use is Markdown fed to Haunt:

(which is sad because your Org file with Babel sessions is much nicer…).
I think Pierre had something to convert Org to Markdown.  To
syntax-highlight Scheme code, you must start Scheme blocks with
“```scheme” in Markdown.

PNGs for graphics are good.

You can post a patch against the guix-artwork.git repo here when you’re

If you want we can publish it next Tuesday or Thursday.  We could have
it on both and, with one saying that it’s a
re-post of the other.

Thank you for the great article!


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