Linux Magazine: Unix: The Granddaddy of Open Source

“So, is Open Source just a fad or a serious challenge to the
status quo? Looking at the history of UNIX may shed some light on
this question. Although the history of UNIX is pretty well known by
now, let’s consider it from a slightly different perspective.”

“Originally developed at AT&T Bell Labs, UNIX was never an
Open Source movement per se, but its source code was licensed to
Universities for a nominal fee. That resulted in scores of young
developers playing around with it. AT&T was inadvertently
seeding the market for UNIX at a time when that was still an
unknown concept. The next generation of computer, mathematical,
science and engineering graduates was becoming intimately
acquainted with UNIX. This resulted in an explosion of development
around the UNIX operating system. Richard Stallman wrote the first
Emacs editor. The University of California created several
utilities that would soon become standard to UNIX systems,
delivermail (later to become sendmail) being just one, and Bill
Joy, a co-founder of Sun Microsystems, was the UNIX project leader
at Berkeley. It was the widespread acceptance of these products and
protocols that allowed for the later rapid growth of companies like
Sun and Cisco.”


Get the Free Newsletter!

Subscribe to Developer Insider for top news, trends, & analysis