some talk from before jumping into plan9



That I have been somewhat infatuated with plan9 from the moment I first set my eyes on it should be no secret. It's not exactly that I embrace it entire but I like what it claims to be it's principles, or at least I want to be able to embrace it. Becoming familiar with plan9 however is a bit difficult for the uninitiated. Unintuitively to those within the plan9 space I feel like it might actually be easier to approach plan9 to those who have no previous Unix experience. Extra counter intuitively plan9 might be a better example of Unix than ubuntu, Debian, or Manjaro is for people who are frustrated and coming from a windows or mac mindset. Unlike modern operating systems there is no mistaking that plan 9 really is from outer space. It doesn't pretend to make things similar. The power of Unix is locked away and hidden by nicety and convenience in Linux. Every design choice is catered to making things "Easier" to do. If you don't follow any of this because you are one of the "Uninitiated" that is totally fine. Plan9 is at it's core an argument for simplicity and consistency. Simplicity takes effort. Simplicity doesn't happen on accident. Simplicity requires taking hard looks and making difficult decisions. I believe that those who care the banner of plan9 into the present have missed the full lessons of plan 9. Clearly the distributed model for hardware and file systems are a great thing, however Has any one of the 9front developers asked themselves "If the kinds of devices we have now had been possible then what would plan9 have looked like?"? Has anyone seriously taken a look at plan9 not using 2d bitmap graphics as the primary mode, but rather fully accelerated 3D as primary mode? What about input? Surely the mouse being a first class input at the time was controversial - but they had not considered a world where touch screens would be /even more/ ubiquitous. If there was a network of devices all running a modern imagining of plan9 with all the new tricks devices have were implemented the only way a casual user would be able to comprehend would be magic. Never mind those who are so indoctrinated by the limitations of Linux. Surely they would think what was occurring was nothing more than smoke and mirrors. Put another way - what operating system would tony stark use? A modern fork of plan9 using voice input as trumping the keyboard, using touch screens and gestures instead of chording a mouse. At this point all of this is purely speculative. There is a voice in the back of my mind that tells me doing this, putting work into making this, is a BAD idea. That voice tells me that to make such a thing would be giving too much power to people who have proven they can't wield it. It would be like giving a bazooka to a chimpanzee. I still want that bazooka. Perhaps this world already exists, it's not speculative. Perhaps those who are able to create such a system just leave the clear-net behind leaving their bread crumbs behind marking their disappearance without fanfare. Perhaps even if that's not the case that's what I should do. If you are reading this, those ahead, I'm coming for you. If you are reading this, those behind, this is the path I'm headed towards. There are 2 primary "Distributions" I am aware of for plan9: the original bell labs plan9 with small changes for architecture, and 9front. 9front is "Actively" developed - for whatever that's worth. The community is contentious and rife with controversy. I don't give much shit about that. I'm more interested in which I should use from the perspective of which will be easier to do what I will with it. I don't particularly care about supporting devices beyond the devices I have. The documentation is "Good" in that it exists and answers many of the questions a user might have. However it makes some assumptions about things like installation which are probably good if your point is to weed out the unworthy. Like some of the stuff assumes you are already inside plan9 to begin with, which is pretty funny. Like I'm not interested in just setting up a single device and calling that a day. Maybe that's fine. Idk. For hardware the first device I want to go with is raspberry pi, because it will let me use one of my CRTs and VCR as a physical display finally. It might make sense to put the authentication server in a VM on my desktop, but see with that thought I'm already getting off the rails. If I go that route it makes sense to have the first thing I set up be a plan9 VM on my laptop or something. That's the device I am currently using. Maybe it makes more sense to do the first device be a VM on my desktop, then a VM on here, then do the raspberry pi. Hmmm This is all very complicated. Alright so lets do that then. My understanding is it shouldn't matter if I go with 9front for the authentication server then add a node that is bell labs plan9 later because they still communicate via p9. Maybe that's not a proper understanding? I suppose we'll burn that bridge when we get to it. .

incoming references