[TUHS] Unix tools to aid in the production of Internet RFCs?

Clem Cole clemc at ccc.com
Thu Aug 27 08:02:08 AEST 2020

On Wed, Aug 26, 2020 at 5:25 PM Dan Cross <crossd at gmail.com> wrote:

> So I'm curious: what tools did people use to produce those documents?
What was available at the time?  Some of the first were done with a
typewriter ;-).   That said, a lot of the early ones (1960-thru late 70s)
were done using one of the different flavors of the runoff schemes, with
the PDP-10 family being pretty popular since many of the Arpa supplied
systems were based on PDP6/10s. The output, as you see, was formatted ASCII
printer listings. Once Unix hit the scene, particularly with Vaxen, nroff
took the lead, but since other than CMU/Stanford/MIT, XGPs (or later
Dovers) were rare.  Using a plotter (*a.k.a. *vcat and family) troff starts
to take off it some places beyond folks with an XGP (like UCB).   By the
time of the many different JAWS, and the Apple Laserwriter and eventually
different HP printers, the nroff/troff family was very much the norm, with
some Tex/LaTex at some point.  MS-Word does not start to show up until
about 15-20 years into the process.

As you noted, Bakul has a pointer to the current set of tools; but you
asked in the past tense; so I'm assuming you mean, how did the first 1-2K
or so get created.
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