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Unix Hits the Big Four-Oh

Jun 16, 2009, 20:31 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Paul Rubens)

"What we do know is that Unix was conceived in the spring of '69 and gestated over the summer months with a team at Bell Labs Computing Science Research Center that included Ken Thompson and Dennis Ritchie.

"Not for them the sort of ponderous development schedules coders at Microsoft enjoyed: While Windows Vista took several years to develop from initial idea to finished product, the fathers of Unix worked to a different beat altogether. How's this for a confident approach to developing what may be the most important operating system the world has ever seen: "I allocated a week each to the operating system, the shell, the editor, and the assembler to reproduce itself ..." Thompson explains.

"And so, 40 years ago, something came in to existence. "Although it was not until well into 1970 that Brian Kernighan suggested the name 'UNIX,' in a somewhat treacherous pun on 'Multics,'[and] the operating system we know today was born," confirms Ritchie."

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