World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Gosling Emacs

Article Id: WHEBN0000059666
Reproduction Date:

Title: Gosling Emacs  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Emacs, GNU Emacs, Emacs Lisp, Java/Selected biography, James Gosling
Collection: 1981 Software, Emacs, Unix Text Editors
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Gosling Emacs

Gosling Emacs (often shortened to "Gosmacs" or "gmacs") was an Emacs implementation written in 1981 by James Gosling in C.[1] Its extension language, Mocklisp, has a syntax that appears similar to Lisp, but Mocklisp does not have lists or any other structured datatypes. Gosling initially allowed Gosling Emacs to be redistributed with no formal restrictions, but later sold it to UniPress.

Gosling Emacs was especially noteworthy because of the effective redisplay code,[2] which used a dynamic programming technique to solve the classical string-to-string correction problem. The algorithm was quite sophisticated; that section of the source was headed by a skull-and-crossbones in ASCII art, warning would-be improver that even if they thought they understood how the display code worked, they probably did not.[3]

Since Gosling had permitted its unrestricted redistribution, Richard Stallman used some Gosling Emacs code in the initial version of GNU Emacs. Among other things, he rewrote part of the Gosling code headed by the skull-and-crossbones comment and made it "...shorter, faster, clearer and more flexible."[3]

UniPress began selling Gosling Emacs (which it renamed Unipress Emacs) as a proprietary product, and controversially, asked Stallman to stop distributing Gosling Emacs source code. UniPress never took legal action against Stallman or his nascent Free Software Foundation, believing "hobbyists and academics could never produce an Emacs that could compete" with their product. All Gosling Emacs code was removed from GNU Emacs by version 16.56, with the possible exception of a few particularly hairy sections of the display code. The latest versions of GNU Emacs (as of August 2004) do not feature the skull-and-crossbones warning.

References

  1. ^  
  2. ^ Gosling, James (June 1981), A Redisplay Algorithm, Proceedings of the ACM SIGPLAN Symposium on Text Manipulation 
  3. ^ a b  
  • Christopher Kelty, "EMACS, grep, and UNIX: authorship, invention and translation in software", http://www.burlingtontelecom.net/~ashawley/gnu/emacs/ConText-Kelty.pdf


This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.