[TUHS] a book (was Re: PWB vs Unix/TS)

Jon Steinhart jon at fourwinds.com
Sun Sep 15 15:17:21 AEST 2019

Larry McVoy writes:
> On Sat, Sep 14, 2019 at 08:30:38PM -0700, Eric Allman wrote:
> > I deeply
> > regret that I never had an opportunity to meet Joe Ossanna.
> As roff guy I couldn't agree more.

I feel worse.  I probably did meet him but was a kid and didn't
know he would be special.

BTW, I still use troff for lots of stuff.  I know that tex is
more capable, but troff is burned into my dna.  I started with
roff when I wrote my first BTL technical memorandum and later
moved to nroff.  Never actually used the C/A/T at BTL but I
remember the smell of the developer and pages hanging out to
dry.  I find the tex language a bit ugly, but that's just my
taste.  I have piles of crufty packages cobbled together around
it, but they're not really fit for use by others.  

I like to write in troff because it allows me to think about
what I want to say without worrying about how I want it to look
until later.

Probably the ugliest tool is the one that I used to convert my
book from troff into office because my publisher wouldn't take
troff.  Converted everything into openoffice xml format.  Extracted
all of the diagrams and tables, ran them through separately, then
through ps2pdf then pdf2svg, and then inkscape for cropping to
generate svg images for all of the art since they're the only scalable
image format understood by office.

Way back in the 80s when scheduling was new I wrote tools that generated
pert and gantt charts via pic.

The power of little and languages and composability lives on!


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