> On Dec 9, 2019, at 5:30 PM, Doug McIlroy <doug(a)cs.dartmouth.edu> wrote:
> Moo and hunt-the-wumpus got quite a lot of play
> both in the lab and at home. Wump was an instant
> hit with my son who was 4 or 5 years old at the
> Amusingly, I speculated on how to generate degree-3
> graphs for wump, but obviously not very deeply. It
> was only much later that I realized the graph
> always had the same topology--a dodecahedron.
You know, maybe we’ve been looking at this wrong the whole time (I blame Yob).
Maybe the caves aren’t the vertices of a dodecahedron. Maybe they’re the faces of an icosahedron.
Bit hard to classify this one; separate posts since COFF was created?
Augusta Ada King-Noel, Countess of Lovelace (and daughter of Lord Byron), was
born on this day in 1815; arguably the world's first computer programmer and a
highly independent woman, she saw the potential in Charles Babbage's
J.F.Ossanna was given unto us on this day in 1928; a prolific programmer, he
not only had a hand in developing Unix but also gave us the ROFF series.
Who'ld've thought that two computer greats would share the same birthday?
> From: Lars Brinkhoff
>> PARC's MAXC appears in the mid-1970s.
> Maybe this is a good time to ask if anyone knows whether any of those
> diverse systems has software preserved? Specifically, the
> implementation of the NCP and 1822 Host-to-IMP protocols?
Both MAXC's were PDP-10 re-implementations, and ran TENEX. So the basic
system is still around, not sure if they had any interesting local hacks
(well, probably PUP support; MIT tried to put it in MIT-XX, so it may
still exist on thats backup tapes).
> From: Rob Gingell gingell at computer.org
> A collection of maps of the ARPAnet over time is available from the
> Computer History Museum
Interesting; I also have a large collection of maps:
all with hi-res versions (click on the thumbnails). Some of the ones
at the CHM I don't have, but the coverage time-wise is similar.
I also have a modest collection of hosts.txt files, ranging from
Jul-77 to Apr-94.
> I've forgotten at this point whether the assignments were documented in
> RFCs or other assigned numbers documents from the Network Information Center
The first 'Assigned numbers' RFC was #739, from November 1977. It never
contained host addresses. There were a very few early RFC's which contained
host adresses (#226, #229, #236), but pretty quickly host addresses were done
via the hosts.txt file, distributed from the NIC. (Given the churn rate, using
RFC's didn't make sense.) Early RFCs about this are #606 and #627. There were
a bunch of RFC's that reported on 'host status' (e.g. how their software was
doing), but their goal was different.
PS: A number of people are leaving out the definite article before 'ARPANET';
this seems to be popular these days (especially in the UK it seems, not sure
why), but it is incorrect.
Also, the correct spelling is all capitals (check e.g. through old RFCs).
Until of course the AP gets their hands on it (I'm breathlessly awaiting
their announcement that the U.S. President's reference is to be referred
to as the 'white house').
The ARPAnet reached four nodes on this day in 1969 (anyone know their names?);
at least one "history" site reckoned the third node was connected in 1977 (and
I'm still waiting for a reply to my correction). Well, I can believe that
perhaps there were only three left by then...
Hmmm... According to my notes, the nodes were UCSB, UCLA, SRI, and Utah.
As every computer programmer should know, John Backus was emitted in 1924; he
gave us the BNF syntax, but the sod also gave us that FORTRAN obscenity...
Trivia: there is no way that FORTRAN can be described in any syntax; it is
> I would second that. His Xinu book was one of the two that helped
> demystify operating systems for me.
> Wesley Parish
I've moved this over to COFF as it's only tangentially related to Unix.
As a undergraduate I found Doug Comer's Xinu book in the library. At the
time, I was learning C but I only had an Apple ][+ clone which didn't
have a C compiler.
Therefore (obviously), I hand-recoded Xinu in assembly, built a 555
timer circuit, connected it to the IRQ line on the 6502 and got Xinu
up and running (with a shell, with my own ls, with redirection etc.)
on my Apple ][+ clone:
Yes, crazy I know.