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Re: bug#61894: [PATCH RFC] Team approval for patches

From: Felix Lechner
Subject: Re: bug#61894: [PATCH RFC] Team approval for patches
Date: Tue, 7 Mar 2023 07:21:41 -0800


On Tue, Mar 7, 2023 at 2:37 AM Andreas Enge <> wrote:
> And the feature branches with
> QA on cuirass or the Guix Build Coordinator that we talked about at the
> Guix Days.

For what it's worth, someone turned one of my patch sets into a
proof-of-concept for feature branches. You can follow the progress via
the original patch, [1] the feature branch, [2] or the resulting CI
job set. [3]


> There are currently 48 committers, and not all of them are active.
> I think this is just not enough for 20000 packages.

If a brief comparison is permitted, Debian maintains 35,000 source
packages with about a thousand voting members (aka Debian Developers)
as well as another thousand or so contributors. My estimate is that
about a third of all those people are active. On a per-package basis,
that's about fifty source packages per contributor there.

For Guix, I do not know how many committers are active or how many
people contribute without commit privileges, but assuming two hundred
active contributors altogether, I arrive at a guesstimate of about 100
packages per contributor for us.

Packaging in Guix is much simpler, however, and our collective
approach and care also reduce the pressure to be perfect. (In Guix,
the "perfect" sentiment only survives in the formattin of commit
messages.) Debian's celebrity status among software distributions also
attracts a lot of people.

As a side note, the growth of a group can lead to greater social
tensions and a proliferation of outside politics. Given the excellent
stewardship in Guix to date and the technical possibilities of
automatic patch approval, I am therefore not necessarily in favor of
growing the contributor base at all costs.

We really have something special in Guix. Thank you all for your hard
work and mutual friendship!

Kind regards,
Felix Lechner

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