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From: Rich Morin <>
To: The Unix Heritage Society mailing list <>
Subject: Re: [TUHS] BWK talk on early Unix Friday 14 January 2022
Date: Mon, 17 Jan 2022 16:52:58 -0800	[thread overview]
Message-ID: <> (raw)
In-Reply-To: <>

> On Jan 17, 2022, at 13:37, Nelson H. F. Beebe <> wrote:
> I've just watched an interesting presentation given last Friday via
> video link to the Linux Conference in Australia:
> 	Brian Kernighan
> 	The early days of Unix at Bell Labs

I just watched the entire thing; great fun!  I particularly liked the part about pipes and was reminded of dmr's comment:

> ... The idea, explained one afternoon on a blackboard, intrigued us but failed to ignite any immediate action. There were several objections to the idea as put: the infix notation seemed too radical (we were too accustomed to typing ‘cp x y’ to copy x to y); and we were unable to see how to distinguish command parameters from the input or output files. Also, the one-input one-output model of command execution seemed too confining. What a failure of imagination! ...


The closing line seems quintessentially Dennis.

On a vaguely related note, I've really enjoyed using pipes in Elixir (borrowed from F#, AFAIK).  In their basic form, they carry only the complete output of the sending function.  However, there is a stream version which works with incomplete data.  Given the sparse nature of C's design, it isn't surprising that pipelines were omitted, but it rather surprises me not to see them in more of its successor languages.


  reply	other threads:[~2022-01-18  0:53 UTC|newest]

Thread overview: 3+ messages / expand[flat|nested]  mbox.gz  Atom feed  top
2022-01-17 21:37 Nelson H. F. Beebe
2022-01-18  0:52 ` Rich Morin [this message]
2022-01-18  3:22 Douglas McIlroy

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