[TUHS] fmt(1): history, POSIX, -t, -c

Warner Losh imp at bsdimp.com
Sat May 30 01:43:12 AEST 2020

On Fri, May 29, 2020 at 7:40 AM Clem Cole <clemc at ccc.com> wrote:

> On Fri, May 29, 2020 at 1:11 AM Michael Stiller via TUHS <
> tuhs at minnie.tuhs.org> wrote:
>> It is also included in 2.9BSD, or was it backported:
> Just recompiled. I don't think this was one he had to make any changes
> too. As Mary Ann and I said, Kurt wrote as part of the UCB Mail package
> [which includes delivermail(8) - which was the moral parent to
> sendmail(8)].
> The whole key is that Keith did not have a Vax at the Math department
> (they had an 11/70 with max memory) and wanted all of the cool programs
> that were being created on the Vax.   Remember, VM is automatic overlays.
>  So first with the kernel, and then later with user code, larger and larger
> programs were enabled and many of the programs for the Vax migrated to the
> PDP-11, as people ran out of address space (IIRC: one the first user
> programs that needed to use overlays was ex/vi.  Again, as I recall the
> original wnj version by then was such a mess, getting a new/cleaner code
> base was a large impetus for Keith to start writing nvi).
> Anyway, many smaller programs 'just worked' and the original fmt(1)
> command was pretty simple.   As Doug so wisely observed:  "It's hard to
> imagine how this command could stray from classic Unix simplicity and intelligibility,
> but Gnu pulled it off."

While Berkeley arguably bloated things somewhat in improving its
functionality, gnu said 'here, hold my beer' in the 90s and we're still
holding the beer.

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://minnie.tuhs.org/pipermail/tuhs/attachments/20200529/96a7b843/attachment.htm>

More information about the TUHS mailing list