May 1st, 2004

A friend recently asked me, “Where is the innovation in Unix?” I think Mark’s list of 8 essential applications answers with another question, “We’ve already got the best tools in the world, why innovate?”

I might quibble with Emacs, but I tend to think of that as a personal failing of mine, and I might expand rsync to include tools like dirvish which are built on top of it, and I’m less impressed by but other then that it’s a great list featuring the tools I use every day, all day, like oxygen.

Also I get a little bit more passionate about his second 8, you can try to pry XChat from my cold dead fingers, I use it everywhere, and am very happy with it. Ditto Bloglines for all my non-private feeds. On source control, I’m a CVS partisan and never thought I would switch, but we have a fifth column (I’m looking at you Josh) here at, who is successfully driving the move to Subversion. Still I’ve woken screaming from nightmares about corrupted Berkeley DB files, so we’ll see. No definitive messaging clients, image editing tools, or music management (though I’m pretty happy with iTunes 4.1, if it was open source we’d be on our way to a winner)

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