On Sun, Jun 1, 2014 at 10:09 PM, Doug McIlroy <doug@cs.dartmouth.edu> wrote:
Gnu was always taken as a compliment. And of course the Unix clone
was pie in the sky until Linus came along.

​Actually I would say the real contribution was not emacs or the getting the user space code rewritten, but gcc.  While compared to many commercial compilers it ​has never been the "the best" but is seems like its always "up there" when compared and in fact I find it a "better" compiler than some of the commercial ones in the embedded space.

rms's gift was getting a "production quality" compiler in the everyone's hands that was portable "enough" that it was basically OS independent.   

As for UNIX clones, Doug, I would sort of differ with you on that.   There were numerous "clones" and rewrites from Plauger's Irdis efforts to Andy's Minux if you want to discount the slow rewrite from the inside out of BSD.

I content, what really made Linux happen was the ill fated AT&T vs BSDi/UCB case -- a lot of people (myself included) miss understood and were worried BSD would have to go away.   I would later be educated in realize, if AT&T had won all of the UNIX "clones" would have had to go away in the west/Nato countries.   And frankly, I'm not sure it would have survived that.

I agree with you about being annoyed with the words ""The full documentation for ___ is maintained as a Texinfo file" but I find a number of things in Linux that make me just as annoyed.    It seems like there are a lot of changes because they could, not be cause it really mattered.

But then I remember that as you point out, it runs on everything and that does make me smile and does make life so much easier for all of us.