David Korn interview

This is a wonderful interview of David Korn, which, of many things, deals with Korn's fight with a microsoftie over the Korn shell, Korn's choice of an editor, his efforts to make Korn shell as good as PERL, and, the fun side of things, the band KORN. A few extracts from this interview:

 Was the story about you embarrassing a Microsoftie at a conference true? Specifically, that he was insisting that their implementation of ksh in their unix compatibility kit was true to the "real" thing and trying to argue the point with you. The argument ended when someone else finally stood up and informed the speaker who he was arguing with.

Just curious ...

Korn: This story is true. It was at a USENIX Windows NT conference and Microsoft was presenting their future directions for NT. One of their speakers said that they would release a UNIX integration package for NT that would contain the Korn Shell.

I knew that Microsoft had licensed a number of tools from MKS so I came to the microphone to tell the speaker that this was not the "real" Korn Shell and that MKS was not even compatible with ksh88. I had no intention of embarrassing him and thought that he would explain the compromises that Microsoft had to make in choosing MKS Korn Shell. Instead, he insisted that I was wrong and that Microsoft had indeed chosen a "real" Korn Shell. After a couple of exchanges, I shut up and let him dig himself in deeper. Finally someone in the audience stood up and told him what almost everyone in the audience knew, that I had written the 'real' Korn Shell. I think that this is symbolic about the way the company works.

So Korn (the band) drinks Coors Light? I might have suspected...

Korn: As far as the Korn band is concerned, as you probably already know, it was formed in 1993 to promote the Korn Shell. On the kornshell.com website (click on fun), you can see them endorsing the KornShell Command and Programming Language book, the most complete reference book on ksh93.

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