In modern engineering organizations, the container image has become a core artifact that passes through build, CI, and release systems. However, these container images can be awkward; once inside a container, code becomes more difficult to work with. Containers are great for when you're ready to ship, but there are other ways to package, reuse, share and collaborate before deploying to production. Some of these tools, like Nix and flox, can provide better reproducibility, consistency, and convenience than the Dockerfile we've all come to know and love. This talk will provide a side-by-side comparison of different ways to create and manage container images, contrast the different philosophies behind each approach, and provide tips and tricks - made possible with open source tooling - that can unleash cross-language and cross-machine portability for any software stack.
Nixpkgs, the backbone repository of the wildly popular and widely adopted NixOS Open Source project, is one of the most unique repositories on Github. With nearly 10K forks, more than 12K+ stars, millions of commits and hundreds of thousands of pull requests, it truly has pushed the Github platform to its limits of scale. In this talk we'll share what managing such a massive repository really involves - both from the maintenance perspective and from the platform itself. We'll walk through the level of discipline and and efficient collaboration this level of adoption demands from the maintainers, what review processes look like at thousand-PR monthly scale to truly harness the power of collaboration. Some of the OSS work done by the Nixpkgs team has actually been more on the workflows, tools, platform and infrastructure side to enable the team to efficiently handle the sheer scale of the repo, to ensure smooth operations for users, proper review processes for security and governance, and also keep up with the level of innovation any product requires, including an OSS project. Come to this talk to gain practical tools for such OSS management in the real world.ck.
Lead Engineer at Flox. Have used Nix in small teams, and large organizations, from academic research to war zones, to manage hardware and to train artificial intelligence. Started his career at Google, then spent 14 years in the Marines flying planes and working as a software engineer before joining an early startup in the defense contracting space. It was while serving in the U.S. Marine Corps Forces Cyberspace Command that Tom first became aware of the “superpowers” inherent in Nix, and for over a decade has been a leader in the Nix community, participating in Nixpkgs curation efforts and leading NixOS releases, at the same time struggling to incorporate and promote the use of Nix and NixOS in his “day job”.