In 50 years, the Unix operating system has gone from a tiny two-person experiment in a New Jersey attic to a multi-billion dollar industry whose products and services are an integral part of the world’s computing infrastructure. Along the way, there have been many changes, but a surprisingly large amount is in fact almost unchanged from when it started.
How did this come about? What are the good ideas in Unix that have been preserved and even spread? What are the good ideas that have fallen by the wayside? What are the not so good ideas that have prospered? And what might the future hold?
As someone who was present at the creation (though certainly not responsible for it), I’ll present some humble but correct opinions on these and related topics.