[TUHS] Need your help for 2019

Paul Ruizendaal pnr at planet.nl
Sat Mar 4 18:21:16 AEST 2017

The year 2019 is big for retro computing as all of Unix, the Arpanet
and the PDP11 become 50 years old. TENEX as well, but that is off-
topic for this list.

In many ways these technologies are foundational to today's
computing: aren't three-quarters of todays devices built on
top of these technologies?

Maybe Google, Facebook and other "internet" companies are willing
to throw their weight behind some commemoration if it can be made
relevant to a wider audience.

Perhaps emulators for these old systems that can run in a browser
(or as an app) with instructions clear enough for today's web
developer is a good way to pay homage.

It would be a big job though, probably to big to do in 2.5 years.


On 4 Mar 2017, at 4:16 , Warren Toomey wrote:

> Mid-year 2019 is the 50th anniversary of the creation of Unix and I've
> been quietly agitating for something to be done to celebrate this. Up to
> now, there's been little response.
> The original Unix user's group, Usenix, will hold its Annual Technical
> Conference on the west coast of the US at this time, so it would make sense
> to do something in conjunction with this conference. Some suggestions:
> - a terminal room with a bunch of period terminals: ASR-33s, -37s, VT100s,
>  VT102s, VT220s
> - these connected to real/emulated Unix systems either locally or via a
>  terminal server and telnet to remotely emulated systems
> - some graphical terminals: Sun pizza boxes, a Blit would be great
> - if possible, some actual real PDP-11s, VAXen
> - emulated systems: V1 to V7 Unix, 32V, the BSDs etc. In fact there are
>  plenty of Unix versions that we could run in emulated mode.
> - Unix of course was one of the systems used to implement the Arpanet
>  protcols, so it would be interesting to get some of the real/emulated
>  systems networked together
> - how about an emulated UUCP network with Usenet on top of it, and
>  some mail/news clients on the emulated systems.
> - retro workshops/tutorials: how to edit with ed, using nroff, posting
>  a Usenet article, dealing with bang paths.
> I'm proposing to gather a bunch of people to start the ball rolling on the
> technical/demonstration side. We'd need people:
> - with terminals, portable PDP-11s and VAXen, Sun boxen
> - prepared to set up emulated systems
> - who can help bring the networking (UUCP, Usenet, Arpanet) back to life
> - willing to write and run workshops that show off this old technology
> - to help set up terminal servers and all the RS-232 to telnet stuff
> Some of this we can start doing now, e.g. rebuild an emulated Arpanet, UUCP,
> Usenet, get emulated systems up, build front-end telnet interfaces.
> Is there anybody willing to sign up for this? I think once we have some
> momentum, we can tell the Usenix people and get some buy-in from them.
> Post back and/or e-mail me if you can help. Thanks, Warren

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