[Beowulf] 9 traits of the veteran Unix admin

Bob Drzyzgula bob at drzyzgula.org
Thu Feb 17 07:33:14 PST 2011

There's a saying among photographers that the best camera
is the one you have with you. I think a similar argument
can be made for editors -- the best editor is the one
you know how to use.

While I am firmly in the vi camp -- the only emacs
command I ever really managed to learn was ^X^C -- there
are historical reasons for this.  I learned Unix on a
standalone system (a Sun 2/120 with SunOS 1.1) without
any access to the Internet, and vi was the only editor
available on a stock install of that system that was worth
learning. By the time I had access to emacs a lot of my
vi knowledge had kind of moved into my brain stem.

While I tried to learn emacs a couple of times, it just
seemed like it took forever for the thing to load. I expect
with modern computers this is less of a concern, but at the
time, for a systems person who had to do small amounts of
work on a large number of systems rather than a lot of work
on a single system, this was a major issue.  Actually, I've
always assumed that any applications programmer/systems
programmer correlation with emacs/vi preferance stems
largely from this one factor (rgb: yes, I know, jove; but
sorry, you're in a very small club there). In any event,
on top of this I found emacs very alien and disconcerting,
so I gave up on it.

But none of this means that vi is "better" than emacs,
just that it is better for me, because I already know how
to use it. I could write a treatise about why I like vi,
but none of my arguments would ever be any more compelling
to an emacs user any than their affinity for the disaster
that is emacs :-) would be to me.

--Bob Drzyzgula

On 17/02/11 07:14 -0700, Michael H. Frese wrote:
> Let the Editor Wars begin!
> Mike
> At 09:10 AM 2/16/2011, Prentice Bisbal wrote:
> >Anyone see this yet? He's pretty dead on, IMHO, especially 5,6,9
> >
> >
> >http://www.infoworld.com/t/unix/nine-traits-the-veteran-unix-admin-276
> >
> >--
> >Prentice
> >
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