[TUHS] cat -v and other complaints

Arthur Krewat krewat at kilonet.net
Sun Sep 9 02:10:00 AEST 2018

On 9/8/2018 10:22 AM, Ralph Corderoy wrote:
>> I'm interested in learning about this curses vs blit business. Is
>> there a writeup or book chapter out there that covers this in any
>> detail?
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blit_(computer_terminal) is a jumping-off
> point.  And I suppose the same goes for curses(3):
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curses_(programming_library)

In my opinion (as retarded as I can be sometimes), this is an 
apples-and-oranges comparison.

Blit is a completely new terminal type, with specific operating 
system/software support.

Curses is a way to control various already-existing terminal types. DEC 
terminals, Hazeltine, etc. A recent termcap on my Solaris server has 472 
entries. The wide-ranging support was quite important.

Many people/institutions had a variety of terminals already, usually 
recycled from previous systems. I remember one instance when I was 17 
years old working at BOCES/LIRICS on Long Island, and an office worker 
in a local high-school looked at me like a deer in the headlights when 
they could no longer use their current-loop terminal and acoustic 
coupler. Sorry, the leased-line mux in the other room can't do that. It 
has to be RS232. We gladly gave them a new LA36. Which invoked another 
set of "how do I..." questions. Ah, progress. (This was to support 
TOPS-10 on DEC KS10's, but the same thing happened many times over my 
early career. People just didn't want to give up what they already had)


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