I will start this post with a little story.
When I was porting OpenMSX to Nixpkgs, I was paralyzed by the custom build system they use (namely, a Python script embedded in a Makefile).
As I have low programming skills in order to understand and modify the package by myself, I decided to talk directly to OpenMSX developers via IRC.
I quickly explained a bit about Nixpkgs, and how its idiosyncrasies prevented a successful detection of TCL/TK toolkit. Basically, they were trying to detect tcl script in a default location like
/usr/local. Then, they made a small patch in their build system in order to accomodate unusual locations for TCL/TK.
Now, my question is:
How should be our policy of relationship with the upstream about that subject of submitting Nixpkgs-specific patches?
I say this because the unorthodox way Nixpkgs works exposes some “flaws” in their building scripts, as hard-coded paths and tacit dependency assumptions like the ubiquitous
In the case above, they patched the source in order to handle our specific distro. I think it would be better if we sent some patches to upstream because maintaining them on our side is a nonsense burden, while those patches could help these upstream developers.
But we need to do it in a way we don’t appear like arrogant ad invasive to them.