Turn here for answers to all-important questions, such as...
Why does the online documentation lie to us? Why does the operating system overwrite valuable files with garbage? Why does the user's guide bear no relationship to reality? Why do the commands have cryptic names that have no bearing on their function? What is a grep? What is vi? Do troffs live under bridges, or are they inverted trons? WHERE ARE THEY SENDING ALL THE UPPERCASE LETTERS?...Continua
The authors hate UNIX and make no bones about it; they call UNIX a virus! When I started reading, their language seemed vitriolic, but then soon I began to enjoy the sarcasm. Most of the stuff they state is true, though a lot of it has been fixed in Linux and modern Unices. The book presents a lot of very interesting historical titbits and trivia about UNIX. In every chapter I found many fundas about UNIX I didn't know. Tons of email from the UNIX-HATERS mailing list are presented, which are extremely funny to read. I was really rolling with laughter while reading them, especially with the analogies they use. The book has funny cartoons at the start of every chapter showing users being tortured by UNIX in various ways ;-)
If you are a *nix lover, please read this book. I promise you the book is un-put-downable. There is good coverage of the early UNIX days, vulnerabilities with SUID programs, the Morris worm, problems with NFS, why X sucks and such. For all the hate the authors aim at UNIX, they are not able to provide a feasible alternative for it. They are all from the MIT AI Lab and it shows in their love of MULTICS and Lisp Machines. Most importantly, the book gives hours of fun filled reading....Continua
* Larry Wall is also the creator of the patch program.
* A newgroups program which came later was named trn since it had the ability to thread or tree the messages.
* In the early days of Usenet it took a week for a message to propagate since each hop in the network was crossed on an overnight phone call.
* The VTxxx terminals we hear about today (while using terminal emulators) come from the original DEC VT line of terminals. (VT - Video Terminal)
* Bill Joy was the guy behind termcap - a library that is linked into programs that need terminal I/O capabilities.
* Open up your system's /etc/termcap file. See how the commands look like ViM commands? Bill Joy was the guy behind vi too.
* How did the X get it's name? X was started by a guy who was familiar with W. W was a windowing project at Stanford. This W was a part of a project named V.
* James Gosling (the father of JAVA) at Sun created NeWS (Network Extensible Window System) at about the time X was getting popular. But, X won, NeWS lost.
* loser was an affectionate term used to refer to an user at MIT. I think this could also be origin of the term luser....Continua