[TUHS] man-page style

Lars Brinkhoff lars at nocrew.org
Mon Nov 19 16:13:41 AEST 2018

Jon Steinhart wrote:
> Chet Ramey wrote:
>> Improvement is in the eye of the beholder. RMS and other folks consider
>> info, with its hyperlinks, indexes, and tree-based navigation the superior
>> alternative.  Not just different, but better.
> So were it me, I would have looked at the current culture in the UNIX
> environment and figured out how it gracefully extend it for new
> functionality.

Yes, that's would have been very reasonable.

But I have the impression that GNU from the outset was supposed to go
beyond Unix.  My vague memory is that the phrase "GNU's not Unix" kind
of implied "we're making a copy of Unix... but we'll change it any way
we see fit".  The announcement figured things like a Lisp-based
windowing system and Chaosnet.

Remember that Stallman came from a dozen years of working with ITS and
Lisp machines.  It seems likely he wanted to pick the best parts and
transplant them on top of Unix, making GNU.  To some degree, he
succeeded: Emacs is EMACS, unexec is PDUMP, Emacs Lisp is Maclisp, Info
is INFO, GCC internals kind of wants to be Lisp.

Not arguing for or against here, just trying to provide some historical
background as I see it.

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