[TUHS] V9 shell [was Re: Warner's Early Unix Presentation]

Clem Cole clemc at ccc.com
Wed Feb 12 00:36:38 AEST 2020

Amen.  As a dyslexic (which most often shows when I'm typing as you folks
have experienced) autocorrect generally is a PITA.   FWIW: Grammerly works
well for me.  It underlines in dotted red and lets me look at what it
thinks it should be - where I can accept it or not.

Doug -- I agree DWIM was just silly.... UCB's Pascal system (pix) tried it also
and let's just say it failed as I explain in a comment /answer on quora (


On Mon, Feb 10, 2020 at 10:33 PM Doug McIlroy <doug at cs.dartmouth.edu> wrote:

> > What i like is the autocorrect feature in v8:
> >
> > $ cd /usr/blot
> > /usr/blit
> > $ pwd
> > /usr/blit
> Here I am, editor of the v8 manual and unaware of the feature.
> We now know that silent correction is a terrible idea.
> Postel's principle: "be conservative in what you do, be liberal
> in what you accept from others" was doctrine in early HTML
> specs, and led to disastrous disagreement among browsers'
> interpretation of web pages. Sadly, the "principle" lives on
> despite its having been expunged from the HTML spec.
> Today's "langsec" movement grew out of bitter experience
> with malicious inputs exploiting "liberal" interpretation of
> nonconforming data.
> Today's NYT has an article about fake knockoffs of George Orwell
> for sale on Amazon.  It cites an edition of "Animal Farm"
> apparently pirated by lowgrade OCR autocorrected and never
> proofread. One of the many gaffes is that every instance of
> "iv" beame ChapterIV, as in "prChapterIVacy".
> I didn't like some Lisp systems' DWIM (do what I mean) when I
> first heard about the feature, and I like it even less 40-some
> years on. I would probably have remonstrated with Rob had I
> realized the shell was doing it.
> Doug
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