[TUHS] man Macro Package and pdfmark

Dan Cross crossd at gmail.com
Thu Feb 20 23:15:07 AEST 2020

On Thu, Feb 20, 2020 at 2:44 AM Rich Morin <rdm at cfcl.com> wrote:

> I looked at Solaris very briefly and decided that it wasn't my idea
> of a proper (read, BSD) Unix system.  So, I kept my Sun running SunOS
> until I finally replaced it with a FreeBSD box.

I got the Unix-on-PCs religion sometime in the mid-'90s after Sun's shift
to Solaris and SVR4 and FreeBSD was my ecclesiastic weapon of choice after
a brief flirtation with Linux. I will admit, with a small amount of shame,
that I still carry around a bit of that chauvinism, though now driven
primarily by nostalgia instead of belief in technical superiority.

When I was in high school, the folks I looked up to told me, "BSD is the
stuff; SysV is garbage" and not knowing anything, I adopted that as a sort
of "four legs good, two legs bad" kinda mantra. I liked Sun machines
because they were what the cool people were using, but the move to Solaris
felt like a betrayal and I started looking for alternatives. The Alpha was
promising, but didn't make a lot of local headway. SGIs were neat but felt
like high-end toys for graphics weenies and Irix was too weird for my
taste. PCs were getting fast, though, and within a couple of years we went
from my 486DX/33 to 200 MHz Pentiums and FreeBSD was real, so that seemed
like the way forward. It amazed me how everyone around me kind of rolled
over, threw their hands up and said, "Oh well, I guess we all have to run
Solaris now...."

Wait, what? Why? I remember being dismayed that no one else saw the
potential for running essentially gratis software on cheap, fast hardware,
and that the same people who gladly put down multiple hundreds of thousands
of dollars for a VAX a decade prior, but then threw away the
vendor-supplied OS and installed 4.3BSD now were so concerned about things
like, "vendor support" that they couldn't see to doing essentially the same
thing, but at much lower overall cost.

What a time....

        - Dan C.
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