operating systems

From: Wirehead Prime <wirehead_at_retrocomputing.com>
Date: Thu Jan 1 01:42:38 1998

> a)I am curious to know what that sed command line _was_

cat filename | sed s/"text to replace"/"replacement text"/g > outfile

You can also do

sed s/"text to replace"/"replacement text"/g < infile > outfile

In my case it was under 40 characters to replace every instance of 1995 with
1997 in a 25mb file.

> b)I appreciate Linux's usefulness for networks (I did mention TCP/IP stacks,
> remember :), but I see no use in it for anything else. i.e. stuff like word
> processing. Since that is the most common computer function today, I would
> think Linux would have some utility for it, but all there is is stuff like vi
> and EMACS. Why can't Linux folks settle with some MS Word-style program?
First, I don't consider word processing to be a meaningful test of an OS's
usefulness. Word processing is probably the most wasteful way ever
invented to use personal computers. Sure it's easy but I can word
process just as quickly and easily on my old Mac SE as I can on a new 95

Second, there are applications...I believe WordPerfect is available for
Linux as well as many other WSIWYG programs. I don't use them on my
Linux box because I prefer to have it do useful things.

Third, I think you need to pick up a copy of Linux Journal as it has
listings for commercial software etc.

Fourth, let's not underestimate the value of what you call 'TCP/IP Stack'
operations. We're not talking about a replacement for Trumpet Winsock
here...we're talking about being able to do EVERYTHING that thousands of
dollars worth of commercial software can do, do it better and
FASTER...for FREE. The financial value of that alone is incalculable
when you realize how much of the Internet simply would not have been
implemented had it not been for Linux (and other free unix-based OSs).
> But wait! I DID try installing a small text editor to run under X. It needed
> MOTIF, but said it would run with LessTIF. So, I copy over LessTIF and it
> doesn't compile. Neither does the little notepad program, for that matter.

All of this software you mention, or equivalents, is readily available on
sunsite.unc.edu or other Linux archives in binary form.

> That was the end of my last try at Linux, a few months ago. I have a Slackware
> Linux CD with Kernels up to 1.3.12. I now have T-1 access, though, so if you
> can suggest a system which COULD BE A VIABLE REPLACEMENT FOR MacOS OR WINDOWS,

Linux isn't a replacement for MacOS or Windows...it goes FAR BEYOND the
capabilities of either. Certainly you can use it for word processing,
using the WordPerfect etc mentioned above, but Linux boxes are serious
business machines that can represent thousands of dollars in revenues to
a business that uses it.

It's like saying a Cray could never be useful because you can't run
Microsoft Word on it. I don't think it's reasonable to make Word the
be-all end-all basis for judging a machine.

Keep in mind that there's a trade-off between flexibility and
ease-of-use. Linux will never be as easy to install as Windows 95. It
isn't intended for that purpose. It's far too powerful and flexible for
that and assumes that the user wants to go beyond mere word processing.

Anthony Clifton - Wirehead
Received on Thu Jan 01 1998 - 01:42:38 GMT

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