[TUHS] Remember the ed thread?

John Cowan cowan at ccil.org
Wed Mar 31 11:29:59 AEST 2021

On Tue, Mar 30, 2021 at 9:03 PM Norman Wilson <norman at oclsc.org> wrote:

A standard for the standard editor?

No, I mean an implementation that provides the union of features (and
preferably though not necessarily of syntaxes) in Posix ed and ex, GNU ed,
the ex mode of vim, and BSD ed.

I thought the nice thing about standards was that there
> were so many of them.

... and if you don't like any of them, wait till next year, yes.  But (to
use examples of local significance) who would have foreseen that a
character encoding standard put forward in 1992 for an obscure OS in 1992
would so completely take over the world, or for that matter another obscure
OS written by the same people in 1969?

It's fine to complain that there is no more research in such-and-such an
area; however, while many projects are worked on forever and the great
majority are abandoned, there is a third kind of project that is simply
*finished*.  Cal, for example, provides the same output in both Linux and
BSD versions as the Seventh Edition when given the original arguments
(except for titlecasing the weekday names), though both have additional
bells and whistles such as being able to set the date of the Gregorian

John Cowan          http://vrici.lojban.org/~cowan        cowan at ccil.org
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