Unity? (was: What's your favorite distro, and why?)

Levi Pearson levipearson at gmail.com
Wed Dec 11 11:18:42 MST 2013

On Wed, Dec 11, 2013 at 9:01 AM, Michael Torrie <torriem at gmail.com> wrote:
> On 12/11/2013 03:49 AM, Dan Egli wrote:
>> I guess I'm dating myself again, but what's OpenStep? Remember I've had
>> only glancing contact with Linux for nearly 10 years now. (NOT by choice,
>> by the way)
> If only there were a way to look up and read about these sorts of things. :)
> OpenStep hasn't really been in the news so to speak more than 10 years.
>  In fact it was old news even 10 years ago.
> Though in a way that's a bit odd as I'd have thought that after OS X
> became popular, OpenStep (well an open source implementation like
> GnuStep at least) would get more love by the hacker community in general
> to make porting apps to and from OS X easier, but alas few people seem
> interested in using ObjC and Cocoa-style APIs outside of Mac.

Yeah, OpenStep was originally a clone of the stuff that ran on the
NeXT cubes, if you remember those.  I used to drool over them in the
BYU bookstore.  They looked extremely nice compared to the crap x86
boxes of the day, but they had a price to match.  The cases were
actually built out of magnesium, and you can probably still find
videos of people on the web burning them.

For a while, window managers that aped the look and feel of the NeXT
interface were popular.  WindowMaker is the one I remember most
clearly, but many others have borrowed from the look without trying to
copy it so precisely.  The near-ubiquitous 'dock' interface metaphor
came from the NeXT GUI.

Apple hardware has been popular enough in the hacker community that I
imagine that most of the people who want ObjC and Cocoa are already
just using Macs.  ObjC and NeXTStep were definitely ahead of their
time, but even with all the Cocoa updating they feel a bit retro now,
though I still think it's a very well-designed system overall.

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