Why is not everything reproducible yet?

Santiago Torres-Arias santiago at archlinux.org
Wed Feb 14 15:19:17 UTC 2024

On Wed, Dec 20, 2023 at 09:42:53AM +0100, Bernhard M. Wiedemann via rb-general wrote:
> Sometimes people wonder:
> Why is not everything reproducible yet?
> And the general reason is that there are other interests that result in
> added non-determinism.
> I collected some with examples
> [...]
> Ciao
> Bernhard M.

I like this!

I've been wondering if there's a systematic way to study this from a
more academic perspective. I don't want to broaden the scope of this
threat too much, but recently I've been wondering three things:

1. can we study the conflicting interestes (i.e., above) that stop
	reproducibility from happening. 

2. Are misunderstandings about reproducibility getting in the way from
	pushing to it (e.g., the notion that docker containers are
	inherrently reproducible). Is the perfect the enemy of the good?
	what notions of reproducibility exist and how can we build a
	roadmap from the weak to the strong?

3. What other uses of r-b exist beyond the malicious toolchain example?
	can we use them as leverage to increase interest in the space?

I think these questions may require a bit more long term to study this
properly, but this list is a good start!

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