Probably the best lecture of nix fundamentals on the internet

On my nix journey, i’ve digested a lot of documentation, and seen a lot of talks on everything nix,
there are some nix experts out there, but they are so expert it’s like a monkey (me) talking to super alien intelligence (them). This is nobodies fault, just when you’ve spent many years in the nix ecosystem, things start to make sense. It’s completely alien to any other build system / operating system out there. The learning curve is brutal (mainly because of the nix-lang being a functional dsl)

This archived live stream is absolutely brilliant, it goes thru all the questions i had when i started, how nix wraps insanely clever shell scripts, how to debug, where things in the bash are being ‘sourced’ and the relationship between a ‘nix build’ and ‘nix shell’. It’s not only full of ‘nix magic’ , but every step is well explained, and many nixpkgs standard library abstractions are described in a way that a traditional unix build engineer would click with.

The presenter not only knows their stuff, but can explain/show it in a ‘I know unix build systems very well, but I don’t know nix’.

IMHO It’s that good, this should be right up there on the ‘learn’ homepage… . What do you think Rok … @garbas ,

This is kinda of material i’d wish i’d discovered on day 1, rather than ‘go read the nix pills’ :-). However i’d need a time machine, because this was streamed in may this year ;-).


One “issue” with these talks is that some of it is very specific to his use cases. For example, the nix/scripts/ he talks about were created by him, and don’t reflect “nix”, but rather trying to get many different environment to bootstrap a nix environment…

The actual “nix” content is quite good though.

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whoops, i post two video, not the one… corrected. Jon, your tutorials will always have a special place in my heart ;-).

good picture, I like it

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It’s not exactly the same, but I’m doing a live nix hour every week to help people learn various aspects of Nix, see The Nix Hour, a weekly Nix Q&A Lecture by Tweag for more info :smiley:


I often question can all computer programmers teach their craft at all? (this is not directed at you personally).

My drum mentor says, that many people can play the drums but very few can teach the drums well.

Being a expert computer programmer and excellent mentor / technical writer / trainer / teacher is a combination of skills indeed.

In fact, sometimes it not about the course content, it’s about the person. The reason why many people go through a few driving instructors before the settle on one they 'like.

I’m glad your taking your time to do Q&A, but the highest bandwidth between trainer and trainee’s i have ever seen, is in a room, with laptops and a small class size…

Hopefully more can get started, and get back people in rooms again, talking, sharing, learning and having fun together.