unix simplicity vs. hardware complexity


On Day 1 of #Unix50, Timothy Roscoe presented an interesting talk concerning the implications of running the brilliantly simple Unix design that was an apt fit on the hardware of yesteryear on the increasingly complex systems of today.

Having spent a career cogitating on operating system design, Tim's recherche description of the dichotomous relationship between the Unix philosophy and modern hardware should prove thought-provoking for anyone involved in systems or even application programming. For as Tim proposes:

Don't ask: how can I get Unix to work on this hardware landscape? Ask: what is the moral equivalent of Unix, for this hardware landscape? How can we radically simplify the OS for complex, heteregeneous and diverse hardware devices?

Whether you agree with his sentiment or not, it's certainly an interesting talk; and at only ~20 minutes in length, worth a quick watch. Enjoy!

Tags: unix
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