UNIX: Its Promise and Its Problems

by Charles S. Hodge, Boyle Engineering Corp, Newport, Beach, CA, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Computing in Civil Engineering


AT&T's computer operating system, UNIX, has long been considered the answer to the transportability, training, and non-uniformity problems of modern computer operating systems. AT&T offers UNIX for a minimal license fee (no fee to Universities) which has resulted in every major computer manufacturer making UNIX available on their computers. However, UNIX has not been totally accepted in the marketplace. Why isn't it happening? There are several problems in Utopia: certain security features are not in the UNIX standard, the user interface is not easy to learn by noncomputer people, programmers are reluctant to provide applications if UNIX for so small a market, manufacturers are not totally free from programming responsibilities. These problems are discussed in detail along with the solutions that the computer industry is applying to remedy the situation.

Subject Headings: Computer programming | Fees | Systems management | Human factors | Training | Licensure and certification | Colleges and universities | Industries

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