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Re: Newbie thoughts on Guile Hall + Guix

From: Aleix Conchillo Flaqué
Subject: Re: Newbie thoughts on Guile Hall + Guix
Date: Wed, 9 Feb 2022 12:05:13 -0800

My 2 cents:

- Doing something in Guile is tough. I've been trying since 2011.

Why is it tough?

- The manual is written by very smart people for very smart people. Not for
newcomers. I'm excited to see what Blake comes up with, but the content
will probably still be not-trivial. At the end of the day it's a reference
manual, not a book to teach you how to write a new project from scratch.

- There are no simple and modern resources that teach what is the
"Guile/Scheme" way. How do you even organize a project when you start? Or
something like to teach the basics. Yes, you can read
books but most people when they start to learn a new language they just
want to try to do something quick. And the books that teach Scheme are not

- Lack of libraries. We do have libraries but the ecosystem is not big and
for those libraries we have it's hard to get started, most don't have
simple examples or don't have examples at all.

- Assuming you find the library you need... how do you start using it? How
do you install it? Now there's Guix, but not everyone has Guix or wants to
install Guix. I'm on macOS currently so I can't even install Guix

- Lack of support in editors other than Emacs (yes, geiser is great!).
There's a project that might help there: But LSP is not enough, you
need a paredit equivalent, etc.

- Creating a new library is (or was) not easy. guile-hall and guix help
here. But how do newcomers even find "guile-hall"? Should guile-hall be
part of Guile and included in the manual?

- Distributing the new library you have created is (or was) not easy
either. Also, guile-hall and guix issues here.

So basically today we are kind of forcing people to learn Emacs and Guix
(if you can even use Guix) to have a minimum decent environment.

For me starting with Guile was not hard because of autotools, I already had
to deal with that for many years. For me the hardest part was the lack of
resources (libraries, tutorials, examples, simple books).

As for myself, I've been trying to create libraries to replicate what I use
at work (and I'm far from that) or others that I find fun. And I will try
to keep doing that to improve Guile's ecosystem and help with anything else
I can.



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