[OT] Re: Saving The World.
David T. Lewis
lewis at mail.msen.com
Wed Sep 5 01:09:38 UTC 2001
On Tue, Sep 04, 2001 at 02:50:45PM +0200, Cees de Groot wrote:
> Edmund Ronald <eronald at rome.polytechnique.fr> said:
> >Do you remember the days when computers were mainly found at
> >universities ? Well, Linux has saturated that market, which actually
> >correponds to the initial Un#x design goal.
> Small correction: AFAIK, the original Unix design goal was to run telco
> switches, and it did that a lot for a long time in big numbers. I don't
> know why exactly it became popular at universities (probable a combination
> between a port to the popular PDP machine, source availability, and the
> fact that Unix had the 'by hackers, for hackers' feel), but I'm quite sure
> it was not the design goal.
"Perhaps paradoxically, the success of the Unix system is largely due to
the fact that it was not designed to meet any predefined objectives."
- "The UNIX Time-Sharing System", by D. M. Ritchie and K. Thompson
It most certainly was not designed with any thought or intention of
supporting universities or running telco switches.
See <http://cm.bell-labs.com/cm/cs/who/dmr/cacm.html>. If you only ever
read one thing about Unix, read this. It's very short, and contains
practically everything worth knowing about Unix. It also has a nice
"Back to the Future" flavor to it now that a few decades have passed.
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