Re: 9term

  • From: Bill Meahan <wmeahan@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: Chris Siebenmann <cks@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 2 May 2002 16:43:18 -0400

On Thu, 2 May 2002 16:18:24 -0500
Chris Siebenmann <cks@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> | 9term on my Linux laptop is kind of cool and I'd like to play with
> | it more. However, it doesn't play nicely with standard ncurses apps.
> | Anybody got a termcap/terminfo entry for it?
>  A termcap/terminfo entry won't help; 9term isn't cursor addressable.
> If you need to run cursor-addressable (full-screen, etc) applications,
> you need to spawn an xterm.

OK, that answers a few questions all at once!

>  I tend to work in both 9term and xterm alternately, depending on
> exactly what I want to do at the moment.
> | Anybody remember the UA (User Agent) sorta-text/sorta-graphic
> | windowing UI on the good old UNIXpc/7300/3B1 ? I may have been the
> | only person outside of AT&T who liked it and I still think it has
> | some good ideas.
>  My memories of my 3B1 are now somewhat moth-ridden, but I don't
> remember the UI as being anything particularly impressive. Was it
> anything more than basically simple terminal windows?

It was kind of like a window manager/desktop. Another way of looking at
it might be a bitmapped-extension of curses. Curses, of course, is
character-cell based while the UA extended that to a bitmap base. The
3B1 used it as a menuing desktop (if that makes any sense). That is,
text strings instead of icons. Since it was a curses superset, more or
less, it was considerably easier to work with than X and may
curses-based programs could be easily "upgraded" by lining against the
UA libs instead of the standard curses libs.

Besides my own warped sense of what tools I like, it might be very
useful for low-resource systems such as PDA's, old 386 laptops or other
relics that still have a lot of use left in them.

>  There was at one point a similar, freely available windowing package
> (much more lightweight than X) who's name I have now completely
> blanked on that worked somewhat similarly. It ran on Suns and I think
> some other hardware of the time (1990 or so) and did most window
> manipulation things via terminal escape sequences and, I think, had
> terminal windows built in. You might find that interesting; I believe
> it should be in the archives on comp.sources.unix or the like.
>       - cks

That would be good ol' MGR. It's still around and ported to Linux.

Thanks for the tips!
Bill Meahan  WA8TZG         wmeahan@xxxxxxxxxx
"Always do right. This will gratify some people 
   and astonish the rest." -- Mark Twain

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