30 Jun '13, 3pm

Retrotechtacular: Bell Labs introduces a thing called ‘UNIX’

Retrotechtacular: Bell Labs introduces a thing called ‘UNIX’

Modern operating systems may seem baroque in their complexity, but nearly every one of them - except for Windows, natch – are based on the idea of simplicity and modularity. This is the lesson that UNIX taught us, explained perfectly in a little film from Bell Labs in 1982 starring giants of computation, [Dennis Ritchie], [Ken Thompson], [Brian Kernighan], and others. At the time this film was made, UNIX had been around for about 10 years. In that time, it had moved far from an OS cloistered in giant mainframes attached to teletypes to slightly smaller minicomputers wired up to video terminals. Yes, smallish computers like the Apple II and the VIC-20 were around by this time, but they were toys compared to the hulking racks inside Bell Labs. The film explains the core concept of UNIX by demonstrating modularity with a great example by [Brian Kernighan]. He took a short pas...

Full article: http://hackaday.com/2013/06/30/retrotechtacular-bell-labs...

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