If you haven't seen it, check out Ken Thompson's brilliant paper on compiling regular expressions.  The date was 1968... In effect, he built a JIT to do regular expression searches (on an IBM 7094, no less!).


The earliest reference is a paper by Kleene in 1956.   In fact, I recall that * was sometimes called "the Kleene star" in the day...


----- Original Message -----
"Paul Winalski" <paul.winalski@gmail.com>

"ron minnich" <rminnich@gmail.com>
"The Eunuchs Hysterical Society" <tuhs@tuhs.org>
Sun, 9 Jul 2017 17:55:50 -0400
[TUHS] Regular Expressions (was Re: origin of the name 'glob')

On 7/9/17, ron minnich <rminnich@gmail.com> wrote:
> All the DEC-10 and 11 operating systems I used had that wildcard, as well
> as IIRC even the PDP-8, maybe someone can confirm the -8.
> It would have been nice had RE's been the standard way to glob files, but,
> that said, when I mention .*\.c to people instead of *.c they don't much
> like it.

So when were REs first designed and implemented? I would imagine that
they came about as a way to extend the old '*' and '?' wildcard
syntax, but that is only a guess.

-Paul W.