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Multics Emacs: The History, Design and Implementation (1979) (multicians.org)
78 points by pcr910303 13 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 12 comments





One interesting bit I (re-)learned from this is that Multics Emacs was the first Emacs implemented in LISP, so although RMS implemented the first Emacs in TECO, and implemented the currently most popular Emacs, LISP was introduced into it by someone else.

And RMS makes no secret of that: https://www.gnu.org/gnu/rms-lisp.html so I probably learned this before at some point.


> Multics Emacs was the first Emacs implemented in LISP

No, the first Emacs in Lisp was the one from Dan Weinreb for the Lisp Machine, which was also the second Emacs implementation. It was called EINE, EINE Is Not Emacs. Then ZWEI, ZWEI Was EINE Initially.


However, MINCE Is Not Complete EMACS. (Hey Gyro!)

Check out the gorgeous Creative Computing ad:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MINCE

And contrast with the ugly UniPress Emacs ad:

https://imgur.com/zFRzPYQ

    If you edit please try Emacs.

    PROGRAMMER GENERAL'S WARNING: Inferior
    Editors Cause Decreased Productivity Or
    Vaporware And May Complicate Development.

    UniPress Emacs: Less than 90MB "tar"(1).
Also ZMACS is ZetaLisp eMACS:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zmacs

And CLIMAX is Common Lisp Interface Manager emACS:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climacs

Of course JOVE is Jonathan's Own Version of Emacs:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/JOVE

Sadly ZILE is Lossy Emacs:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GNU_Zile

Worse yet, VILE is VI Like Emacs:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vile_(editor)


I stand corrected! And I could have learned that if I had read the footnote in RMS' article...

Didn't Multics Emacs predate ZWEI? Or was kind of contemporary to it?

It's my understanding that the EINE (v1) → ZWEI (v2) rename happened in the '80s, but that EINE was just slightly before Multics Emacs.

The Lisp Machine progress report from 1977 already mentions its Emacs-like editor.

I don't know much about multics emacs, but the author's knowledge of baroque counterpoint and fugue is unparalleled outside of academe.

He's spread his knowledge of music theory with many, including me, on the (opensource) musescore website.


If you'd like to use Multics Emacs (with little effort) you can use the BAN.AI Public Access System - some relevant instructions are posted here: https://lobste.rs/s/uwvpl1/110_days_early_multics_emacs_hist...

I remember using Multics Emacs at Cardiff in the early 80s. It was really noticeable how much more responsive it became when nobody else was using the system.

Who gonna read this, this is so compact.

It’s not mobile friendly although maybe this says more about mobile browsers than the site itself, because it looks like a typical old school “mofo” style website (h1 h2 p etc. no css)



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