[TUHS] dmr streams & networking [was: Re: If not Linux, then what?]

Larry McVoy lm at mcvoy.com
Thu Aug 29 14:10:11 AEST 2019

On Wed, Aug 28, 2019 at 11:29:02PM -0400, Lawrence Stewart wrote:
> > On 2019, Aug 28, at 1:57 PM, Doug McIlroy <doug at cs.dartmouth.edu> wrote:
> >> How long was research running on a PDP-11 and when did they move to a VAX?
> > 
> > London and Reiser had ported Unix to the VAX, replete with virtual memory, in 1978. By the time v7 was released (1979), Vaxen had become the workhorse machines in Research.
> > 
> > Doug
> I???ve always been a little curious about how Reiser (John Reiser, not Hans!) came to port Unix.  I had heard of him from his PhD Dissertation which was something like 35 pages long for Knuth (!) on random number generators.  He finished at Stanford in 1977 and in 1978 he was porting Unix?  How did that happen?

I'm with Lawrence, I'd love to hear this.  This thread is the first I've
heard about John Reiser and London.  I don't remember anything about them
in the Bell Labs journals.

I can say it is not a stretch to go from school to porting, I did that.

School is amazing at making you feel like you can do anything.  I took
the grad compiler class, you could take one of them or two of them at
a time, my buddy Rob Netzer and I took two together and we wrote a 
big subset of the ADA language in a semester.

You slow down when you have to make a product that works in the face
of people doing silly (aka stupid) things.  Error checking is a thing,
compiler error messages that point to the exact problem are a much,
much bigger thing.  Gcc is very good at that, I've got a lot of respect
for gcc, I know how hard that is.

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