Infrastructure update (was Re: [LMH] Ooh, look! List traffic!)
James A. Crippen
Sun Mar 7 19:16:01 2004
Ricardo B=E1nffy <firstname.lastname@example.org> writes:
> If it is a religious issue, I can live with it ;-)
I have it set up that way because it seemed to me when I first set up
the list that the world expected mailing lists to be so configured
However, one of these days when I'm out from under my enormous pile of
papers (taking two history courses and a philosophy course in one
semester was in retrospect a stupid thing to do), I'll get back to
building a kappa replacement. I have a couple of adequate systems and
disks rescued from a dumpster, and I've gotten most of the way towards
getting them usable, but I still need to get DNS, qmail, and Mailman
running, and copy over the home directories. All that requires that I
actually clean a path through the computer room to the computers in
question, and that will take at least as much time to do.
After kappa is rebuilt and restored I intend to put the temporary
computer to use as a file server, which will free up space from
kappa's sagging disks and add 10GB to the available storage. I'm also
considering converting the repo to Subversion, but that's for later
discussion. It seems to be much more efficient and has less problems
with firewalls than does CVS.
>> Being somewhat of a bookworm, I'm always interested in written matters;
>> what was it you found about Lisp machines in your college library?
> Discussions about AI-related stuff and ads featuring machines that looked
> amazingly cool ;-)
Mine has, for some reason completely unbenknownst to any of the CS
faculty, a copy of the INTERLISP manual from the PDP-10 days. I don't
recall the exact date, but it didn't mention INTERLISP-D at
all. Nobody here actually even knew what INTERLISP was except me. I
don't think any of them knew what a PDP-10 was either. Which is one
reason why I'm changing schools soon.
That one apart from the Winston-Horn book is the only Lisp stuff I
could find in our library. Strange. Although I did find a binder
labeled "VAX NIL" and another labeled "TI PC Scheme" in the trash one
day. No idea where those came from, and they didn't include
contents. Kept them for hysterical value.
>> The consensus at the time was to not deal with legal issues until anyone
>> is approaching a working emulator.
> We could do something in the political sphere. I bet they don't expect to
> extract much cash from this, but they could win sympathy. Having said tha=
> the Hercules mainframe emulator keeps coming to my mind. IBM could license
> more software for hobbyist or education purposes.
I really think given the current `debates' going on in the wider world
about software that we should stick to the original plan of having
something working before we start pestering TI for rights. I'd really
rather not have some lawyer after me with the DMCA in his hand right
now, and I think my name, Alastair's, and John's are the three most
well known out there. I suppose if there's still nothing really
working (enough to give a working Lisp interpreter) in a couple more
years people could start doing whatever they want. But I suspect that
both JM and Nyef would like to avoid lawyers as much as I would right
My father got a call from a lawyer in San Francisco last summer who
was asking him about something to do with Lisp. He said he figured the
guy got his name from the phone book (we have the same first and last
names) and called him. My father gave the guy my number but he never
followed up. And that was close enough for me. I want to at least have
my degree done before I have to fuss with law.
> You mean there is no documentation on low level programming?! Oh boy... T=
> may just be a big hard and scary thing to do and actually doing it may pr=
> us right ;-) Have the results of this reverse-engineering been published?=
> can't find much about it.
Alastair has done an incredible amount of reverse engineering
already. I have complete confidence in his skills, even if he
doesn't. ;-) I never have the time to help, which is horribly
unfortunate, because I'd absolutely love to do so. But if anyone else
is really genuinely interested I recommend them reading through all of
the threads in which he's posted details, and then reading what he's
got done so far very carefully. Then ask him for recommendations on
where to start.
The real trick is not to see the huge amorphous mass of undefined
hardware and microcode, but to look at the system one instruction at a
time. Nyef's had really great success with this approach.
James A. Crippen <james at unlambda.com> Lambda Unlimited
61.2204N, -149.8964W Recursion 'R' Us
Anchorage, Alaska, USA, Earth Y =3D \f.(\x.f(xx))(\x.f(xx))