[ih] "Those who don't understand * [will] reinvent it"
(too old to reply)
Tim Moors
2001-11-28 15:43:43 UTC
Does anybody know the source of the quote "Those who don't understand {TCP,
UNIX} are {condemned, doomed} to reinvent it"? I have seen various
attributions to Van Jacobson and James Van Bokkelen for the TCP variant, and
Henry Spencer for the UNIX variant. Can anybody provide dates or sources?

Tim Moors
Web: http://uluru.poly.edu/~tmoors/
Craig Partridge
2001-11-28 16:13:58 UTC
The widely attributed quote for Spencer appears to be:

Those who do not understand Unix are condemned to reinvent it, poorly.

I cannot find a similar quote for TCP, either by searching Google (which turns
up lots of Spencer UNIX quotes), or by searching my archives of the End-to-End,
IETF-Hosts, or TCP-IP. All but the TCP-IP archive are close to complete.

The closest I can find is a statement by Mike Padlipsky to the effect
that the OSI protocols were "reinvented" ARPA protocols (TCP-IP note send
15 April 1989).

Mike Padlipsky
2001-11-28 23:29:33 UTC
At 08:13 AM 11/28/01, you wrote:
> The closest I can find is a statement by Mike Padlipsky to the effect
>that the OSI protocols were "reinvented" ARPA protocols (TCP-IP note send
>15 April 1989).

nice to be remembered. amusingly enough, tho, the closest i can find is in
the very next msg in my 'in-box', where lloyd wood cites the santayana line
that i'm confident the questioned lines are allusions to ... and was
already confident of that explanation when i read the initial msg, i might add.

[he apparently cites it more accurately than i'd remembered it, i might
also add: i 'always' thought it was merely 'those who ignore history are
condemned to repeat it', somehow -- probably because that's how it's
commonly misquoted by those who like to [mis]quote santayana, come to think
of it. not that i feel up to doublechecking in/on 'bartleby', of c., being
retired, after all, and never all that scholarly to begin w/. residual
intellectual curiosity did prompt me to look in my elderly p-_odq_ a few
mins. ago, but when it wasn't there i figured i'd put in enough effort on
the intellectual curiosity front for one day.]

what's left of my memory serves a fault on the particular line of mine you
mention, b/t/w, but i'm certain that whenever i used reinvention in
connection w/ isorm-based protocols i had reinventing the wheel -- and/or
the travois; cf. p. 222 of The Book -- in mind rather than a play on
santayana, whom i only ever talked about in connection w/ one of my
favorite teaching stories from my pre-computer days, wh/ clearly isn't even
remotely relevant to '[ih]'....

cheers, map

[whose shoulder problems caused him to break down some time ago and create
a 'signature' file to apologize for the lack of his formerly customary
e-volubility -- and who's been employing shiftless typing for a long time
now to spare his wristsnfingers, in case you didn't know ... and who's
further broken down and done http://www.lafn.org/~ba213/mapstuff.html ,
rather grudgingly]