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Re: Enterprise Guix Hosting?

From: zimoun
Subject: Re: Enterprise Guix Hosting?
Date: Fri, 07 Oct 2022 13:03:51 +0200

Hi Phil,

I am a bit late to the party.

On dim., 14 août 2022 at 10:53, Phil <> wrote:

> Comments inline.  I'm also aiming to be at the Guix 10 Year thing in
> Paris - sadly only for the Friday, so happy to discuss this informally
> there too!

Sadly, we missed the opportunity to informally discuss at the
event.  Hope next time. :-)

> There was an significant initial effort from me and my team to convert
> all the current venvs to Guix packages and integrate it with the various
> Runtimes and IDEs we use, but once we'd done this, people were largely
> happy to transition.

Which IDEs do you use?

For what my opinion is worth, many of Guix users are Emacs users (just
look at the number of Emacs packages ;-) without speaking about examples
in the manual :-)).  It includes myself.  When I advocate Guix to
biologists or other researchers, I often use Emacs and ’M-x shell’ by
habits and then I move around various buffers again by habits.  People
are often expressing some worry faces 😰.

Therefore, now I try to run the same but with plain terminal as xterm.
But that’s not satisfying because they are not used to this interface.

When the researcher is mainly doing some R analysis, then I try to run
RStudio for demoing – the learning curve is a bit better – they focus on
Guix concepts and how to get the job done instead of being distracted by
just another foreign interface.

It could be nice if we have some starter materials for some IDEs. :-)

>                       I did have to do some tutorials and write a bit of
> documentation that meant people could start using Guix without really
> getting into the details of what Guix is doing.

Are these tutorials public?  Are you allowed to share them?

One of the main roadblock, even for developers, is the lack «Getting
Started» for some specific tasks; as Python, R, etc.

Currently, a newcomer needs some motivation to start alone and from
scratch.  For instance, in a «1h mini-tutorial*» [1,2] I have tried to
explain the pragmatic concepts of Guix that a person in academia could
be interested in for joining the Guix fun.

*mini-tutorial: sorry it is in French.

Although, at some points, this material provides too much internal
details. ;-)

1: <>
2: <>

>                                                  My argument to most
> developers was, "you don't really know all the details of how virtual
> environments work, so why do you care about Guix's internals?".  Most
> happily accepted this argument, providing you give them good docs on how
> to use Guix in the workplace.

I totally agree.  Is these docs too specific to your workplace or can
they be shared?

> Whilst I like Guix's own documentation, some developers did feedback to
> me that it was to complex for people who just wanted to get-on and use
> Guix, rather than setup, understand and maintain Guix.  

Yes, I agree.  If we follow these principles of documentation [3] (for
what they are worth), the Guix manual is in one quarter when 3 other
quarters are not covered yet, IMHO.

Nice, some fun to do! :-)

3: <<>

>                                                         So this is the
> area I ended-up documenting - "Guix Up-and-running for Python
> Developers". One day I'd like to publish it properly, but it's very much
> a WIP at the moment!

For sure, I will be interested by this material!  Even if it is a WIP. :-)

> We now have 5 developers working at least part of the time writing
> Guix packages, or tweaking small bits of the Guix core code (I keep
> meaning to make more of an effort to get our efforts back into Guix
> proper!).  As more developers slowly try-out more advanced stuff in Guix
> this number is growing, and most developers that invest the time end up
> liking Guix - so I think there's plenty of hope to grow it further!

Oh awesome! \o/

> 3 things which lowers the barrier to entry in my experience commercially
> would be:

Some pointers for 2 things.

> - Push button WSL support (I know this has some momentum eg
>   At the moment I tend to use a custom image I made which is just WSL on
>   top of Ubuntu.  I have made it work with busybox, but it's not yet
>   robust enough to wheel out over the enterprise like this.

Mathieu recently published [4].

4: <>

> - Perhaps a set of videos aimed directly at converting a vanilla Python
>   environment into one running in Guix.  Try to entice the communities
>   off their current tooling by making it as easy as possible to switch.
>   I even went as far as writing a requirements file to guix package
>   converter at work to help with this.

There is these nice videos [5] which would require some more love.

Well, some materials for producing these kind of videos can be found
there [6].

5: <>
6: <>


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