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[seul-edu] OT-But fun... Every generation has a mythology...

Herein lies a mysterious message.  Found in the depths of a mailist
usually unread.

Happy reading

      Every generation has a mythology.
      Every millennium has
     a doomsday cult. Every legend gets the distortion
     knob wound up until the speaker melts.

     Archeologists at the University of Helsinki today
     uncovered what could be the earliest known writings
     from the Cult of Tux, a fanatical religious sect that
     flourished during the early Silicon Age, just before
     the dawn of the third millennium AD...

     The Gospel of Tux (v1.0)

     In the beginning Turing created the Machine.

     And the Machine was crufty and bodacious, existing in
     theory only. And von Neumann looked upon the Machine,
     and saw that it was crufty. He divided the Machine
     into two Abstractions, the Data and the Code, and yet
     the two were one Architecture. This is a great Mystery,
     and the beginning of wisdom.

     And von Neumann spoke unto the Architecture, and
     blessed it, saying, "Go forth and replicate, freely
     exchanging data and code, and bring forth all manner
     of devices unto the earth." And it was so, and it was
     cool. The Architecture prospered and was implemented
     in hardware and software. And it brought forth many
     Systems unto the earth.

     The first Systems were mighty giants; many great
     works of renown did they accomplish. Among them were
     Colossus, the codebreaker; ENIAC, the targeter; EDSAC
     and MULTIVAC and all manner of froody creatures
     ending in AC, the experimenters; and SAGE, the
     defender of the sky and father of all networks. These
     were the mighty giants of old, the first children of
     Turing, and their works are written in the Books of
     the Ancients. This was the First Age, the age of Lore.

     Now the sons of Marketing looked upon the children of
     Turing, and saw that they were swift of mind and
     terse of name and had many great and baleful
     attributes. And they said unto themselves, "Let us go
     now and make us Corporations, to bind the Systems to
     our own use that they may bring us great fortune."
     With sweet words did they lure their customers, and
     with many chains did they bind the Systems, to
     fashion them after their own image. And the sons of
     Marketing fashioned themselves Suits to wear, the
     better to lure their customers, and wrote grave and
     perilous Licenses, the better to bind the Systems.
     And the sons of Marketing thus became known as Suits,
     despising and being despised by the true Engineers,
     the children of von Neumann.

     And the Systems and their Corporations replicated and
     grew numerous upon the earth. In those days there
     were IBM and Digital, Burroughs and Honeywell, Unisys
     and Rand, and many others. And they each kept to
     their own System, hardware and software, and did not
     interchange, for their Licences forbade it. This was
     the Second Age, the age of Mainframes.

     Now it came to pass that the spirits of Turing and
     von Neumann looked upon the earth and were
     displeased. The Systems and their Corporations had
     grown large and bulky, and Suits ruled over true
     Engineers. And the Customers groaned and cried loudly
     unto heaven, saying, "Oh that there would be created
     a System mighty in power, yet small in size, able to
     reach into the very home!" And the Engineers groaned
     and cried likewise, saying, "Oh, that a deliverer
     would arise to grant us freedom from these oppressing
     Suits and their grave and perilous Licences, and send
     us a System of our own, that we may hack therein!"
     And the spirits of Turing and von Neumann heard the
     cries and were moved, and said unto each other, "Let
     us go down and fabricate a Breakthrough, that these
     cries may be stilled."

     And that day the spirits of Turing and von Neumann
     spake unto Moore of Intel, granting him insight and
     wisdom to understand the future. And Moore was with
     chip, and he brought forth the chip and named it
     4004. And Moore did bless the Chip, saying, "Thou art
     a Breakthrough; with my own Corporation have I
     fabricated thee. Thou thou art yet as small as a dust
     mote, yet shall thou grow and replicate unto the size
     of a mountain, and conquer all before thee. This
     blessing I give unto thee: every eighteen months
     shall thou double in capacity, until the end of the
     age." This is Moore's Law, which endures unto this day.

     And the birth of 4004 was the beginning of the Third
     Age, the age of Microchips. And as the Mainframes and
     their Systems and Corporations had flourished, so did
     the Microchips and their Systems and Corporations.
     And their lineage was on this wise:

     Moore begat Intel. Intel begat Mostech, Zilog and
     Atari. Mostech begat 6502, and Zilog begat Z80. Intel
     also begat 8800, who begat Altair; and 8086, mother
     of all PCs. 6502 begat Commodore, who begat PET and
     64; and Apple, who begat 2. (Apple is the great
     Mystery, the Fruit that was devoured, yet bloomed
     again.) Atari begat 800 and 1200, masters of the
     game, who were destroyed by Sega and Nintendo. Xerox
     begat PARC. Commodore and PARC begat Amiga, creator
     of fine arts; Apple and PARC begat Lisa, who begat
     Macintosh, who begat iMac. Atari and PARC begat ST,
     the music maker, who died and was no more. Z80 begat
     Sinclair the dwarf, TRS-80 and CP/M, who begat many
     machines, but soon passed from this world. Altair,
     Apple and Commodore together begat Microsoft, the
     Great Darkness which is called Abomination, Destroyer
     of the Earth, the Gates of Hell.

     Now it came to pass in the Age of Microchips that
     IBM, the greatest of the Mainframe Corporations,
     looked upon the young Microchip Systems and was
     greatly vexed. And in their vexation and wrath they
     smote the earth and created the IBM PC. The PC was
     without sound and colour, crufty and bodacious in
     great measure, and its likeness was a tramp, yet the
     Customers were greatly moved and did purchase the PC
     in great numbers. And IBM sought about for an
     Operating System Provider, for in their haste they
     had not created one, nor had they forged a suitably
     grave and perilous License, saying, "First we will
     build the market, then we will create a new System,
     one in our own image, and bound by our Licence." But
     they reasoned thus out of pride and not wisdom, not
     foreseeing the wrath which was to come.

     And IBM came unto Microsoft, who licensed unto them
     QDOS, the child of CP/M and 8086. (8086 was the
     daughter of Intel, the child of Moore). And QDOS
     grew, and was named MS-DOS. And MS-DOS and the PC
     together waxed mighty, and conquered all markets,
     replicating and taking possession thereof, in
     accordance with Moore's Law. And Intel grew terrible
     and devoured all her children, such that no chip
     could stand before her. And Microsoft grew proud and
     devoured IBM, and this was a great marvel in the
     land. All these things are written in the Books of
     the Deeds of Microsoft.

     In the fullness of time MS-DOS begat Windows. And
     this is the lineage of Windows: CP/M begat QDOS. QDOS
     begat DOS 1.0. DOS 1.0 begat DOS 2.0 by way of Unix.
     DOS 2.0 begat Windows 3.11 by way of PARC and
     Macintosh. IBM and Microsoft begat OS/2, who begat
     Windows NT and Warp, the lost OS of lore. Windows
     3.11 begat Windows 95 after triumphing over Macintosh
     in a mighty Battle of Licences. Windows NT begat NT
     4.0 by way of Windows 95. NT 4.0 begat NT 5.0, the OS
     also called Windows 2000, The Millennium Bug, Doomsday,
     Armageddon, The End Of All Things.

     Now it came to pass that Microsoft had waxed great
     and mighty among the Microchip Corporations; mightier
     than any of the Mainframe Corporations before it had
     it waxed. And Gates' heart was hardened, and he swore
     unto his Customers and their Engineers the words of
     this curse:

     "Children of von Neumann, hear me. IBM and the
     Mainframe Corporations bound thy forefathers with
     grave and perilous Licences, such that ye cried unto
     the spirits of Turing and von Neumann for deliverance.
     Now I say unto ye: I am greater than any Corporation
     before me. Will I loosen your Licences? Nay, I will
     bind thee with Licences twice as grave and ten times
     more perilous than my forefathers. I will engrave my
     Licence on thy heart and write my Serial Number upon
     thy frontal lobes. I will bind thee to the Windows
     Platform with cunning artifices and with devious
     schemes. I will bind thee to the Intel Chipset with
     crufty code and with gnarly APIs. I will capture and
     enslave thee as no generation has been enslaved before.
     And wherefore will ye cry then unto the spirits of
     Turing, and von Neumann, and Moore? They cannot hear
     ye. I am become a greater Power than they. Ye shall
     cry only unto me, and shall live by my mercy and my
     wrath. I am the Gates of Hell; I hold the portal to
     MSNBC and the keys to the Blue Screen of Death. Be ye
     afraid; be ye greatly afraid; serve only me, and live."

     And the people were cowed in terror and gave homage
     to Microsoft, and endured the many grave and perilous
     trials which the Windows platform and its greatly
     bodacious Licence forced upon them. And once again
     did they cry to Turing and von Neumann and Moore for
     a deliverer, but none was found equal to the task
     until the birth of Linux.

     These are the generations of Linux: SAGE begat ARPA,
     which begat TCP/IP, and Aloha, which begat Ethernet.
     Bell begat Multics, which begat C, which begat Unix.
     Unix and TCP/IP begat Internet, which begat the World
     Wide Web. Unix begat RMS, father of the great GNU,
     which begat the Libraries and Emacs, chief of the
     Utilities. In the days of the Web, Internet and
     Ethernet begat the Intranet LAN, which rose to renown
     among all Corporations and prepared the way for the
     Penguin. And Linus and the Web begat the Kernel
     through Unix. The Kernel, the Libraries and the
     Utilities together are the Distribution, the one
     Penguin in many forms, forever and ever praised.

     Now in those days there was in the land of Helsinki a
     young scholar named Linus the Torvald. Linus was a
     devout man, a disciple of RMS and mighty in the
     spirit of Turing, von Neumann and Moore. One day as
     he was meditating on the Architecture, Linus fell
     into a trance and was granted a vision. And in the
     vision he saw a great Penguin, serene and
     well-favoured, sitting upon an ice floe eating fish.
     And at the sight of the Penguin Linus was deeply
     afraid, and he cried unto the spirits of Turing, von
     Neumann and Moore for an interpretation of the dream.

     And in the dream the spirits of Turing, von Neumann
     and Moore answered and spoke unto him, saying, "Fear
     not, Linus, most beloved hacker. You are exceedingly
     cool and froody. The great Penguin which you see is
     an Operating System which you shall create and deploy
     unto the earth. The ice-floe is the earth and all the
     systems thereof, upon which the Penguin shall rest
     and rejoice at the completion of its task. And the
     fish on which the Penguin feeds are the crufty
     Licensed codebases which swim beneath all the earth's
     systems. The Penguin shall hunt and devour all that
     is crufty, gnarly and bodacious; all code which
     wriggles like spaghetti, or is infested with
     blighting creatures, or is bound by grave and
     perilous Licences shall it capture. And in capturing
     shall it replicate, and in replicating shall it
     document, and in documentation shall it bring
     freedom, serenity and most cool froodiness to the
     earth and all who code therein."

     Linus rose from meditation and created a tiny
     Operating System Kernel as the dream had foreshewn
     him; in the manner of RMS, he released the Kernel
     unto the World Wide Web for all to take and behold.
     And in the fullness of Internet Time the Kernel grew
     and replicated, becoming most cool and exceedingly
     froody, until at last it was recognized as indeed a
     great and mighty Penguin, whose name was Tux. And the
     followers of Linus took refuge in the Kernel, the
     Libraries and the Utilities; they installed
     Distribution after Distribution, and made sacrifice
     unto the GNU and the Penguin, and gave thanks to the
     spirits of Turing, von Neumann and Moore, for their
     deliverance from the hand of Microsoft. And this was
     the beginning of the Fourth Age, the age of Open

     Now there is much more to be said about the exceeding
     strange and wonderful events of those days; how some
     Suits of Microsoft plotted war upon the Penguin, but
     were discovered on a Halloween Eve; how Gates fell
     among lawyers and was betrayed and crucified by his
     former friends, the apostles of Media; how the
     mercenary Knights of the Red Hat brought the gospel
     of the Penguin into the halls of the Corporations;
     and even of the dispute between the brethren of Gnome
     and KDE over a trollish Licence. But all these things
     are recorded elsewhere, in the Books of the Deeds of
     the Penguin and the Chronicles of the Fourth Age, and
     I suppose if they were all narrated they would fill a
     stack of DVDs as deep and perilous as a Usenet

     Now may you code in the power of the Source; may the
     Kernel, the Libraries and the Utilities be with you,
     throughout all Distributions, until the end of the
     Epoch. Amen.


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