[TUHS] Zombified SCO comes back from the dead, brings trial back to life against IBM

Clem Cole clemc at ccc.com
Mon Apr 5 02:15:32 AEST 2021

At the risk of belaboring a point, that in heart I want us to move to a
different topic and not fight yet another way of who had the best or who is
in the lead, etc...  I would like to see the forum, try to stick to what
happened and what we all can learn from those experiences.

On Sun, Apr 4, 2021 at 11:37 AM Warner Losh <imp at bsdimp.com> wrote:

> A lot of the early open source used to recreate the SunOS commands and
> args. It's what people were used to. Docs were also accessible in a way
> that POSIX wouldn't be for a decade .. after that, it grew from there and
> SunOS started to feel dated.
It was even more than that.  SunOS has some extensions (thread in
particular) that pre-dated pthreads.   A number of us had built pthreads
packages because of Posix, but found ourselves building threading packages
in the key of SunOS and later Solaris - why because the ISV's were using
Sun's threading scheme.

The "why" is simple --- ISV capture for your target was (and still is) the
most important driver of selling new platforms. The better job you do in
making it easy for someone that has an application, the more attractive
your target becomes.

Ted sometimes has mentioned the other "Golden rule" about "he who has the
gold."   As the creator/supplier, it is hard to be magnanimous when you are
ahead and it is often difficult to acknowledge real reason >>why<< you are
ahead.  Plus the people on the other side of the tech delivery (the users),
are more driven by basic economics - what is the most cost-effective way to
get your job done [* i.e. *this is a classic Christensen disruption].

IBM lost the Research/Universities to DEC which started out being very open
and easy to work with and extremely cost-effective.   As more $s piled in
the market, DEC started to be more and more protective (and moved more and
more upscale).   To many at the time, DEC compared to IBM (Mainframe S/360
vs. PDP-6/9/10) again -- worse technology, but 'good enough' (and a new
growing customer base).  The Unix Workstations come out - again 68K vs. Vax
(story repeats).   Sun eventually taking the lead from DEC.    As Larry
points out, Sun certainly started being extremely friendly to the same
group -- again cost-effective and leading tech.  Sun went upscale and the
Intel/Microsoft alliance was good enough to a lot of people.

I supposed there is the pride of owner/developer-ship; but to me, but the
whole Linux vs. BSD (or SunOS or MacOS for that matter) is a silly argument
(and wish people would get over it/themselves).   *Linux (particularly on
INTEL*64) is the current (popular) and cost-effective implementation of
Ken, Dennis, Doug, et al. ideas.  * No more, no less.    Thank goodness it
is cost-effective and accessible to all of us and available for us to use
to do what we need and want to do.   But let's stand on each other's
shoulders, not step on toes for some injustice (believed or truly real).   *A
lot of us and in a number of different places go us to where we are today.*

For us UNIX historians, we need to be careful and learn from our own
history here -- the Cell Phone/Mobile target is the engine for the next
Christenian style disruption.  It is by far the #1 target for people
writing new programs (which I find a little sad personally - but I
understand and accept -- time has marched on).  In the end, a small mobile
target will be the tech on top, and available will be driven by market
behavior and those suppliers will be "who has the gold."
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