One of the questions that comes up all the time is: How enthusiastic
is our support for UNIX?
Unix was written on our machines and for our machines many years ago.
Today, much of UNIX being done is done on our machines. Ten percent of our
VAXs are going for UNIX use. UNIX is a simple language, easy to understand,
easy to get started with. It's great for students, great for somewhat casual
users, and it's great for interchanging programs between different machines.
And so, because of its popularity in these markets, we support it. We have
good UNIX on VAX and good UNIX on PDP-11s.
It is our belief, however, that serious professional users will run
out of things they can do with UNIX. They'll want a real system and will end
up doing VMS when they get to be serious about programming.
With UNIX, if you're looking for something, you can easily and quickly
check that small manual and find out that it's not there. With VMS, no matter
what you look for -- it's literally a five-foot shelf of documentation -- if
you look long enough it's there. That's the difference -- the beauty of UNIX
is it's simple; and the beauty of VMS is that it's all there.
- -- Ken Olsen, president of DEC, DECWORLD Vol. 8 No. 5, 1984
[It's been argued that the beauty of UNIX is the same as the beauty of Ken
Olsen's brain. Ed.]