discussion: goals: compatability?

Gary D. Duzan gary@wheel.tiac.net
Mon, 14 Nov 1994 17:24:39 -0500

In Message <9411142214.AA15597@clipper.ens.fr> ,
   rideau@clipper.ens.fr (Francois-Rene Rideau) wrote:

=>">" is Gary D. Duzan (Hi again, Gary !)
=>>    Here's a quick question: What do the members think of emulating
=>> existing operating system at the binary/source level? How much
=>> effort, if any, should be put into this goal?
=>To me, binary compatibility could be provided as a secondary effort
=>once we have a usable native system. I'd suggest Apple ][ emulation
=>as the first effort. It would be very funny to see Unix or DOS running
=>in a persistent system !!! But if our system is really good, there should
=>be no *need* to be compatible with anyone, except to run games or rival
=>commercial software. As for Unix, source-level compatibility is more easily
=>done, so binary compatibility is of limited interest.

   Ah, but this brings me to the real point: intertia. People like
going in the same direction they have been going. If mass acceptance
of the system is a goal, binary compatability with, say, NT or
Win95 (hopefully DOS will be out of fashion by then) will be a big
boost. Naturally, this only makes sense on nodes with a particular
architecture. For an example, take {Free,Net}BSD vs. Linux. Both
BSD's were more stable than Linux in many ways for a long time,
but Linux had DOS capability (among other friendly things) so it
is more popular, and now you can even get DOOM for it. :-)
   Just some random thoughts. I like stirring things up. :-)

                                      Gary D. Duzan
                         Humble Practitioner of the Computer Arts