2023-06-22 Documentation team meeting notes #57


  • updates and blockers
  • funding opportunities


  • @j-k:
    • have been getting familiar with how Nix builds documentation
    • ran through Nixpkgs manual with a beginner to explain stdenv
      • a lot of usable tutorial-style material, but no good reference
      • would be happy to do fix some low-hanging fruit, such as attribute listings
      • possibly move
  • @fricklerhandwerk: requested @yuki_is_bored to be added the NixOS GitHub org, to join the Github team
  • @zmitchell: LJWG could use some input on a tutorial draft for stdenv.mkDerivation phases
    • currently myself being a blocker for the contributor workflow
  • @fricklerhandwerk:
    • Alexandra will start 5h/w on the docs project
    • Jill continuing with summaries on the docs survey
    • I will have some time to work on onboarding documentation in the next months
    • Will be away calendar week 30-33

Funding opportunities

  • Challenges | Sovereign Tech Fund
  • what could we do with 65-300k EUR?
    • @zmitchell: hire someone full time to overhaul our documentation infrastructure
    • @yuki: taking care of Nixpkgs and NixOS manuals
      • @proofconstruction @fricklerhandwerk: agreed
      • @fricklerhandwerk: concerned that it takes a huge amount of time to get into context
        • could hire multiple people to work on multiple topics in parallel, would review each other’s work
        • @proofconstruction: would still require an expert for guidance
        • @zmitchell: population of people knowing Nix enough, and having capacity or interest in working part time even if well paid, is probably very small
        • @fricklerhandwerk: could leverage some expertise built up through Summer of Nix
          • should hire for full time work, budget would allow for it
  • what would we let paid contributors work on? high-value targets?
    • @proofconstructions: depends on their skill level
      • may require a lot of additional coordination
    • @fricklerhandwerk: Summer of Nix is coming up, mob programming thing is coming up, works really well especially for knowledge-sharing. Could be combined with the documentation effort?
    • @zmitchell: Looking at the Nixpkgs manual; will the recent changes to nixos-render-doc make it possible to split the nixpkgs manual into more than one page?
      • @fricklerhandwerk: certainly, but this is a minor issue requiring relatively small changes in comparison to content quality
    • possible topics:
    • @zmitchell: Would be a lot easier to work on some of this stuff with funding for it, though it feels weird to say “pay me money!”
      • @proofconstruction: Certainly easier to imagine dedicating more time to this project, moving other projects to accommodate, etc. if there’s non-token money behind the effort. Only concern is effectively using the funds/being as productive as possible with the time, to maximize the ROI for the project.
  • @fricklerhandwerk will prepare a draft to discuss next Thursday