2023-03-20 Nixpkgs Architecture Team Meeting #33


RFC 140 shepherds

  • @infinisil: @wanja do you want to?
  • @wanja: Is it OK that to be a shepherd since I worked on the implementation (but not RFC)?
  • @infinisil: Interesting question, no clear answer.
  • @wanja: Will think about it

Should meetings be recorded?

  • @Ericson2314: Meh about it
  • @roberth: Is okay with it, doesn’t feel it’s inhibited
  • @Wanja: Asking the wrong people, should ask matrix
  • @infinisil: If we want to stop recording, we should have better meeting notes
  • @figsoda (Matrix): Maybe delete the recording after a week?
    • @infinisil: Once out there, it’s out there forever
  • @wanja: Record it, but not online, have someone offline do meeting notes, but a lot of work
  • @infinisil: Maybe tooling to add transcript automatically
  • @infinisil: Could ask on discourse or even ask the foundation for somebody who can transcribe meetings
  • @infinisil: Let’s keep recording until we figure out meeting notes

Commenting on Nixpkgs issues/PRs as a team

Afterwards this was discussed on Matrix

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openai-whisper works very good, but when transcribing an audio recording, you don’t have the information who was speaking

an integration into jitsi meet can provide that. the free jitsi meet don’t, but the paid (expensive) and a self-hosted service can with jigasi (PR #136911) and vosk (PR #186917). there is even a WIP PR for whisper support (#454) that might provide better results

not sure how well ChatGPT could create meeting notes out of the transcript. probably too long for free version and that still uses GPT 3.5 (payed version costs 20$/month and offers GPT-4). that might be a viable option :rocket:

you can upload it to youtube as unlisted and share the link here. it’s still out there, forever, but not easy to discover


Thanks for the suggestions! I meanwhile opened Looking for somebody to take meeting notes for the Nixpkgs Architecture Team in the hopes of finding somebody to take meeting notes :slight_smile:

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Test of transcribing recording audio and summarizing with ChatGPT approach.

Download video recording and extract audio:

yt-dlp --extract-audio https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwGaB1oO3ZE

Transcribe using whisper with large model for best results:

nix run nixpkgs#openai-whisper -- --model large --language en Nixpkgs\ Architecture\ Team\ Meeting\ #33\ on\ 2023-03-20\ \[MwGaB1oO3ZE\].opus 

Full transcript:


Who can take meeting notes?
John maybe this time.
Yeah, so there is.
Oh, and actually, let me, let me send the.
Well, just mentioning to Tom that he can join the live stream to still be here.
All right.
Yeah, so we have.
Well, I just created this agenda like five minutes ago.
There’s not a lot of things to talk about, I think, mainly just more things to do.
One of them is the RFC 140 shepherds.
So since last time we had two people nominate themselves as shepherds, which is nice.
I’m sure they were there in the last Nix packages architecture team meeting.
And yeah, so that’s nice.
But we still need a third one.
And, well, I guess I do want to ask the other people in here.
So Tia and Vanya, are you perhaps interested in also becoming a shepherd for the RFC?
Do you link with the RFC?
Yes, it is about the, here you go.
It is about the tool we also worked a bit on last week.
Oh, yes.
Yes, we’re still on that.
I wasn’t sure.
Yes, yes.
This is probably the only thing that the architecture team does that I have any idea what it’s even about.
So if I were to shepherd anything, it’s probably this.
This is the main kind of thing we’re trying to focus on.
But it kind of does need some shepherds to move along, at least for now.
In the future, hopefully, we don’t need to always find shepherds for all the changes we want to propose.
But yeah, feel free to, if you’re like, feel free to read it, see if you’re interested, see if you think you can become a shepherd for that.
And same for T here.
T has been joining a lot of various team meetings recently, just to see.
But also, if you’re interested, if you have some experience maybe as well about the relevant things, and yeah, then feel free to nominate as a shepherd.
I got to say, I have no experience at all with the IFC process, so I do not know. I just opened the shepherd team section of the IFC doc.
Team of security members defined.
Yes, it depends on what you’re comfortable with, because the shepherd team are the ones that kind of collect all the arguments they make, then the final decision about should the RC be accepted, or does it need changes, or should it be rejected?
Depends on if you’re confident in that.
But it’s not so much about the technical work, right?
It’s about…
Yeah, it’s not, you won’t have to implement anything. It’s only about deciding the RC really.
Does my involvement in the implementation conflict with the role as a shepherd? Because I have touched it a little bit.
Oh, that’s an interesting point. Yeah, I don’t think we need…
I think the main point is that the RCs are developed by a team and not just one person. And honestly, I think the RC process should be changed a bit to kind of match that a bit better.
And you’re just coming kind of along and being interested already in this, and I think it should be fine.
But you can point this out as well. I’m interested in being in the shepherd team, but I also contributed part of the tooling. I help out with the tooling code.
Are shepherds supposed to be unbiased? Can they even sensibly try to have that?
It doesn’t say so, I don’t think.
Because I think anybody who has any idea what this is, from a technical side, is going to have some opinion, right?
Yeah, I…
Or maybe it’s not even realistic to have…
Generally, I don’t think there… You can’t even really know whether people are unbiased or not.
I guess it would be good for the steering committee to pick various people that might be against something, but there’s not a selection of people they can pick from.
It’s mainly just the first three or four people that nominate themselves.
Feel free to think about it.
Theoretically speaking, if 10 other people step out of the woodwork and say, hey, I nominate, then maybe the RC steering committee will have to decide or whatever.
Yeah, yeah.
I will think about it a little longer. Maybe I will self-nominate.
Yeah, sounds good.
And otherwise, I think also a good idea would be to…
I’ve actually seen this. Maybe this would be a generally good idea for RFCs to be announced on this course when opened, so that we can find shepherds via this course.
Alyssa says, I can hear the live streaming sound voice, but I can’t hear anybody talking.
Let me check.
I can hear it in the live stream.
Maybe you need to retry.
Okay, let’s see if that works.
Does it work now?
I guess not.
But everybody else can hear me, right?
Nope. There’s one nope in the chat.
Yeah, she’s the only one that can’t hear anyone.
So I think the problem is probably not on our side.
But I think let’s…
I’m also going to point out, you can listen on the live stream.
So yeah, one of the other things I want to bring up is whether the meetings should even be like recorded and live streamed.
Yeah, so in the documentation team, I just noticed this, that they explicitly don’t record meetings, because this way, you can be kind of more open in the meetings and don’t have to worry about something being on the record forever,
which kind of makes it more…
You write down what you want on the record in the meeting notes and everything else is just, you can talk more openly, you don’t have to worry about opinions appearing bad in a way or something like that.
And I’m just wondering because I, from the start, I just kind of assumed it would be a good thing to record meetings and I’ve heard some people say that it is a good thing.
But I’ve never even considered not recording them, because I’ve previously also wondered about other teams, like, can I see what’s going on there?
What happens actually? Also for meeting notes, it’s kind of good, because sometimes meeting notes aren’t super good.
And so we can always use recordings to still infer what we said.
I just kind of want to ask the others here, what do you think about meetings being recorded? Should we reconsider that?
And also, people that are listening in on these via the live stream or the meeting notes, like, are you deterred from joining the meetings because they are recorded?
And what do you think of that?
So just the others in this call, what do you think, John, for example?
I’ve thought, like, oh, I better, like, turn off my camera. And oh, I cracked a joke that now it’s in public. But I could also just be more careful, too. I’m on the fence in either way.
All right. Robert, what do you think?
I’m not comfortable discussing this. I’m kidding, actually.
I haven’t really felt that the discussions were inhibited somehow. So for me, it’s not a problem.
But I don’t know how others feel about it and whether they would even discuss this or, like, fully be aware of inhibitions or whatever.
All right.
If people are being inhibited from joining, you wouldn’t hear about it here. You might hear about it in the matrix. And just to be the devil’s advocate here, what could be happening is somebody is anxious about their voice being on the internet forever, right?
I mean, that’s not even that unrealistic. I know that is the case for some people. So I’m cautiously opposed to the live streaming.
All right. All right. I mean, that’s…
Okay. So, yeah, I mean, I’m… Well, the one thing I would like to have… So I think our meeting notes aren’t that great often. And we currently have the live streams, which makes it kind of okay.
But if we stop with the live streams, I think we need better meeting notes. And since I’m the one usually leading the meetings, it makes it hard to also take meeting notes. And so it would be nice to have someone dedicated to taking meeting notes all the time.
But it could also be someone that’s not in the team, like just someone that’s interested in helping out. And we could also make like a discourse announcement, we’re looking to find someone to write meeting notes one hour a week.
Yeah, so…
When I’m here, I can do it, but I can only show up every other week currently. So can’t be the dedicated notes guy.
Not that in a week, the summertime will kick in for Europeans. Not sure if that will change it.
Maybe. I don’t know off the top of my head.
Yes. Oh, welcome back.
Hey, awesome.
Okay, nice.
So yeah, I’m just going to write down here in the notes myself for now.
If we want to stop recording, we should have better meeting notes.
And currently, I kind of fell into place as the meeting notes taker for the documentation team now since like last week or something. And that works out pretty well for me.
I don’t contribute that much to the documentation team. And so I can just take notes during it and listen. And it would be nice to have someone like that for the documentation team as well.
We got a matrix comment that having the recording helps, maybe the recording can stay live for a week.
I don’t, I guess that helps a little bit, but people might as well just like save the recording during that week. It’s like once something is out in the internet, it’s pretty much out forever.
Maybe an alternative could be, though I’m not sure if that’s any good, could be to keep the recording but not put it on the internet and then have somebody like offline do meeting notes from that or even a transcript possibly.
Oh, I see.
That’s probably more work.
I mean, your voice, your image or whatever, do not get to the internet, and we don’t need to take notes during the meeting.
That’s an interesting approach, yeah. If we can make that work, that would be nice, I think.
Yeah, so someone would have to record it, could take meeting notes during it. Well, I guess they could take meeting notes during it and then if something is kind of missed and not fully understandable, they can just go back, rewind and correct it.
Yeah, we can consider that. I guess that could be, like if we just make, like search for, we need someone to take meeting notes, and as long as you can use whatever you want, you can use local recordings to enhance these meeting notes as long as you don’t put these recordings online.
In the end, the only thing we need is good meeting notes.
We’ve done this for a local kind of hackerspace where some of the meetings people don’t want recorded, but you do want either transcript or at least like seconds from the meeting, minutes, whatever, what I call it.
And we could also, like there’s a lot of like AI stuff out there which can write transcripts for you.
Although with the whole Nix lingo, it’s not that great often. I know YouTube has that as well, where YouTube automatically can add the transcript.
I’m going to write down, maybe something to add transcript automatically.
Definitely for today, if you want me to, I’ll take notes. That’s no problem.
Oh yeah, that would be great.
Do you have the link to the notes?
I think I need an account or something.
I think anyone should be able to add it.
Does it work?
I have no idea where to click. Oh, yeah, I’m not good with technology.
Let’s see. Yeah, it’s doing stuff. Okay, nice.
I’m typing here.
Yeah, so I think that’s good.
So I wonder how, how should we best solve this? Should we write a discourse announcement? Or should we ask the foundation, the Nexus Foundation to do that? That’s kind of an administrative task. That’s not like technical in nature. I feel like the foundation might be good for that.
Any ideas? Maybe not.
So yeah, I’m gonna just, I do not really have the time to, like, work on this, I’d say.
So I’m just gonna put it in here. If you’re interested in writing meeting notes, let me know. I might write a very short discourse post for this later.
But yeah.
And I guess, yeah, until that, let’s keep the recordings until we have someone to take good meeting notes. But after that, I’m totally fine with just not recording.
But then, oh, there’s one final thing, one of the things I wanted to discuss about, Alyssa had some concerns about having kind of discussing something in the team.
And then, particularly last time I commented on this one Next Packages issue, the Rust crates log files in Next Packages, that we kind of decided that it’s too big for Next Packages.
And so Alyssa had the concern that I was commenting as a voice for the entire team, which might not be entirely in line with the goal of the team.
But I’d say let’s discuss this when Alyssa is also here.
So let’s delay this a bit.
Other than that, I can maybe also update since last week, Vanya and me, we paired a bit on the tooling for RFC 140.
We wrote a bit of Rust and discussed a bit about how it exactly works. That was interesting. And we have another hacking session scheduled for today.
And there’s also, there’s still the discourse post, I would like some help clearing that up.
I know that Alex is also interested in this, the discourse post to find a working group for the module system thing.
I’m going to link it in here.
Yeah, heading, can I move it?
Yeah, feel free to.
Yeah, and I think I’m going to work on this a bit more. I think we just need to get this done so other people can get started.
I would like some help. Does anyone have time to help out with this?
Not me, sadly.
Yeah, that sounds like a no.
So yeah, for now, I don’t have a lot of time myself, but when I get to it, I can continue with it.
But let me know if you do have time to this or if you want to start working on this yourself.
All right. But other than that, I don’t have anything else to bring up in the team.
I know that Alex said he would join later. I’m not sure if Tom has anything to say.
I don’t see a message in the live stream. So I think for now, yeah.
Let’s call it for today. Pretty short and uneventful one, but I guess that happens.
John, Robert, does it sound good? You’ve been very quiet, but I just want to ask if you have suggestions for how to have these meetings maybe better or more productive.
No suggestions.
I only heard no suggestions.
Yeah, I didn’t say much other than that.
All right. All right.
I do not get any audio from you.
Seems like we’re having some trouble today.
John, do you want to say something? I cannot hear anything if you’re trying to.
Yeah, I also heard an echo of myself.
Yes, there was there for everybody.
There was an echo.
So I heard you twice.
Yeah, I was with the GC.
How hard could it be to make like a distributed video conference chat thing?
Yeah, so well, if you have any suggestions.
I just want to say Robert’s idea of working groups versus overall triage board.
We’ll also help with this.
Right. That’s also how the documentation team and the next team works with the triage board.
Yes. So anyways, if you have like I’m open to suggestions.
And feel free to. Yeah, thanks, John.
Feel free to mention any suggestions in matrix anywhere really about how to do this better.
But otherwise, let’s let’s just continue trying to focus on the RFC 140 and soon the packages modules thing.
All right. Have a good one.
Thank you.

Then put transcript from Nixpkgs … [MwGaB1oO3ZE].opus.txt into ChatGPT (used free account with GPT 3.5):

Please create meeting notes from this transcript of 2023-03-20 Nixpkgs Architecture Team Meeting #33:


Meeting Notes - Nixpkgs Architecture Team Meeting #33
Date: 2023-03-20

Attendees: John, Tom, Tia, Vanya, Alyssa


  1. RFC 140 shepherds: Two people have nominated themselves as shepherds. One more shepherd is needed. Tia and Vanya were asked if they are interested in becoming a shepherd for the RFC. They were given time to read the document and decide if they want to nominate themselves. It was clarified that shepherds are responsible for collecting all the arguments, making the final decision about whether the RFC should be accepted, needs changes, or should be rejected. It was noted that the RC process should be changed to better match a team’s contribution. Shepherds are not required to be unbiased, but it would be good for the steering committee to pick various people that might be against something. It was suggested that RFCs should be announced on the course when opened so that shepherds can be found via the course.
  2. Recording and live streaming meetings: It was discussed whether meetings should be recorded and live-streamed. The documentation team does not record meetings, and it was suggested that the same policy should be followed.

Action Items:

  1. Tia and Vanya will read RFC 140 and decide if they want to nominate themselves as shepherds.
  2. Consider announcing RFCs on the course when opened.
  3. Follow the documentation team’s policy and do not record meetings.


Whisper wrote names wrong like Tia and Vanya. It understood “this course” instead of discourse sometimes. ChatGPT adds mentioned names to attendees like Tom and Alyssa.

Otherwise the text feels like 80% correct, but not good enough for now. What do you think?

You can get a different results with the same prompt. This is just the first one. You can try it out yourself (ChatGPT account needed).

The result should be improved when using properly integrated transcriptions that preserve who said what and using GPT-4. There could also be a better prompt. We can test that again when it is available.

For now, manually writing meeting notes seem to be the best option.


I talked about the test on social media. Eric offered to test with GPT-4.

The Result is nearly perfect despite the messy input data. With a proper transcript including names, this could be a viable option!

Nixpkgs Architecture Team Meeting #33 - 2023-03-20


  • John
  • Robert
  • Tia
  • Vanya
  • [User]
  • [Assistant]


  1. RFC 140 shepherds update
  2. Recording and live streaming of meetings
  3. Need for better meeting notes
  4. Tooling for RFC 140
  5. Working group for module system

Meeting Notes

1. RFC 140 shepherds update

  • Two people nominated themselves as shepherds since the last meeting
  • Still need a third shepherd
  • Tia and Vanya were asked if they were interested in becoming shepherds for the RFC
  • They will think about it and possibly self-nominate

2. Recording and live streaming of meetings

  • Discussed whether meetings should be recorded and live streamed
  • Pros:
    • Allows people who couldn’t attend to catch up
    • Can be used to improve meeting notes
  • Cons:
    • May deter some people from joining due to privacy concerns
    • Can inhibit open discussion
  • Attendees shared mixed opinions on this issue
  • Alternative suggestion: Record the meeting but don’t put it online; use the recording to create meeting notes or a transcript

3. Need for better meeting notes

  • If recordings are stopped, there’s a need for better meeting notes
  • Looking for someone to take meeting notes on a regular basis
  • [User] volunteered to take notes for the current meeting
  • The team may write a Discourse post to find a dedicated note-taker

4. Tooling for RFC 140

  • [User] and Vanya worked on the tooling for RFC 140
  • They have another hacking session scheduled for later

5. Working group for module system

  • There’s a Discourse post to find a working group for the module system
  • [User] is looking for help to clear up the post and get it done
  • Anyone interested in helping out should let [User] know


  • Tia and Vanya to consider self-nominating as shepherds for RFC 140
  • Look into automatic transcription tools for meeting notes
  • Find a dedicated note-taker for meetings (possibly through a Discourse post)
  • Delay discussing Alyssa’s concerns about the team’s voice until they can attend a meeting

I think we often seek implementation-side people who have not worked on the RFC text as shepherds. Sounds good to have someone who already has a good idea about the implementation concerns in the shepherd team.

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I’ve used Craig, a Discord bot, to record audio before, with good results:

Craig is the voice channel recording bot for Discord with multi-track recording! That means that when Craig records your Discord voice channel, you get a separate audio file for each speaker. You can independently level, cut or otherwise edit each speaker, an invaluable ability for podcasts, let’s plays and the like.

That would help with automatic transcription. A podcast named Oxide & Friends uses it currently, as well, and they reportedly did a good deal of research into hosting such a live show on various platforms.

1 Like