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Thread: I'm curious about *nix

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Near Manchester (England)

    I'm curious about *nix

    Where did this notation come from?

    Is it supposed to be all encompassing of Linux and Unix deriviants?

    Is it based on shell metacharacters? If it is, it's incorrect.

    To my mind it should be *n?x - as Linux ends in nux and Unix ends in nix!

    To my "Purist / Perfectionist," mind the current notation is not right.

    Any comment?
    Tomorrow is another day for yesterdays work!

  2. #2
    Regal Making Handler
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Accept what you can not change.
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  3. #3
    Just a Virtualized Geek MrLinus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Redondo Beach, CA
    *nix came from the legal trademarking of Unix, IIRC, by The Open Group.

    From Wikipedia

    "UNIX" is a trademark of The Open Group and, like all trademarks, should be used as an adjective followed by a generic term such as "system." The term refers more to a class of operating systems than to a specific implementation of an operating system; those operating systems which meet The Open Group's Single UNIX Specification should be able to bear the "UNIX" and UNIX98 trademarks today. UNIX systems include AIX, HP-UX, IRIX, Solaris, Tru64, A/UX and a part of z/OS. In practice, the term, especially when written as "UN*X", "*NIX", or "*N?X" is applied to a number of other multiuser POSIX-based systems such as GNU/Linux, Mac OS X, FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD that do not seek UNIX branding because the royalties would be too expensive for a product marketed to consumers or freely available over the Internet.

    The term "Unix" is also used, and in fact was the original capitalisation, but the name UNIX stuck because, in the words of Dennis Ritchie "[when presenting the original UNIX paper to the third Operating Systems Symposium of the American Association for Computing Machinery], we had just acquired a new typesetter and were intoxicated by being able to produce small caps" (quoted from the Jargon File, version 4.3.3, 20 September 2002). Additionally, it should be noted that many of the operating system's predecessors and contemporaries used all-uppercase lettering, so many people wrote the name in upper case due to force of habit.
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  4. #4
    Leftie Linux Lover the_JinX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Beverwijk Netherlands
    *n[u/i]x anyone..

    Neh.. it originated before linux..

    The name came from OSes like: UNIX, XENIX and MINIX
    they all originated from MULTICS <- also not realy ok.. wich was derived from UNICS <- I won't even touch that one..

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unix <- source for a lot more info (also your notation is mentioned there..)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unx <- some more

    damn I wish I started the wikipedia.org project.. it's the best thing to happen on the www since google

    <edit type=add>
    MsMittens beat me to it again.. nah.. whatever
    ASCII stupid question, get a stupid ANSI.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Near Manchester (England)


    Thanks MSMittens and the _Jinx - Great info.

    Why didn't I think of wiked wikipedia ? Duoh!

    I do accept it jinx, I know I can't change it, as it's in use by so many now! As my post stated, i was curious.

    Thanks again all, for your input.
    Tomorrow is another day for yesterdays work!

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