How To Compute Like A Grad Student
School of Computer Science
Carnegie Mellon University
This is the 1995 version of this talk, which is now obsolete.
You should almost certainly consult
the 1996 version of the talk
- "Information Shotgun" - Mike Jones
- Where Are These Slides?
The Hacker General has determined that keyboards may be
dangerous to your health.
The Good News
- maildrop-machine: ~/.plan
- Position (Graduate Student), Project Affiliation
- Addresses, Phone Numbers
- Directions (for the geographically challenged of us), pointers to maps...
- Schedules (weekly, travel)
- Latitude, Longitude
- A short quote/joke/...
- Pointers to the other .plans in your life
- workstation: ~/.plan
- Up to you
- Maybe empty is good
- Mention your maildrop machine?
A Canonical .plan
% finger claude@cs
[ Forwarding claude as "firstname.lastname@example.org" ]
Login name: claude In real life: William Welch
Directory: /usr3/claude Shell: /usr/cs/bin/csh
No new mail, last read on Tue Aug 24 08:36
Graduate Student, Graphics and Animation Group
office: DH4301D (cross over from 8th floor Wean to Doherty, then climb
stairs till you can't. CAUTION: Stair freezes before hallway.)
usmail: School of Computer Science
Carnegie Mellon University
5000 Forbes Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
home ph: 412/363-9455 (DOD-WILL)
home address: in ~/.directions
project: Serious Putty
advisor: Andy Witkin
Make Yourself At Home (csd)
- CSD = ?
- What Goes In It?
- Subset of static .plan info
- Paper directories are generated from it
- (Check $EDITOR)
- csd -e (on most machines)
Make Yourself At Home (door label)
- setenv TEXINPUTS /afs/cs/misc/tex/common/omega/lib/macros:/afs/cs/misc/tex/common/omega/lib/ps
- latex doorlabeltest.tex
- dvips doorlabeltest -o
- gv doorlabeltest.ps
- lpr doorlabeltest.ps
- NEW; CMU_contrib; doorlabel.doc; edit; "File"/"Print"
- Watch out for its amusing choice of printer
Make Yourself At Home (Andrew Account)
- finger email@example.com
- telnet unix3.andrew
- password is first 8 digits of your "student ID" (SSN)
- Forward your e-mail to your CS account
- Forget about the account until you TA
- What's it all about?
- Find out about talks, parties, ...
- Buy furniture
- Read jokes
- Find useful programs
- Send flowers
- Further Afield
- /usr/ucb/mail or moral equivalent
- What Facilities believes in, what I use
- Lots of little commands (the Unix way)
- xmh, exmh: C/tcl X layers atop mh
- Supports MIME multimedia mail standard, Kerberos POP
- Can at least use it quickly from an ASCII terminal
- mh-rmail (compatible with mh)
- Integrated, flexible, multi-media; several (completely different) programs.
- ez /afs/cs/misc/atk/hp700_ux90/omega/doc/intro.doc
Mail (How to Find People)
- One Namespace
- finger, mail, name all use same address space
- all warn of ambiguity, but they behave slightly differently
- finger vince@cs
- name vince
- csd cate
- External People
- finger firstname.lastname@example.org
- finger email@example.com
- finger firstname.lastname@example.org
From: Mail System (MMDF)"ROBIN.WARP.CS" ...
Subject: Ambiguous address warning
Mail addressed to
was ambiguous, but was delivered to
Jon Webb (webb)
The name "webb" also matched the following addresses.
Bryan Webb (bw0r)
Kris Webb (kjwebb)
To avoid this warning message in the future, address the mail as
- Fancy filtering & processing; instant notification of mail arrival
- Facilities guide, zrcvalert, maildelivery
- Silent, but otherwise reasonable, failure mode (mail held in delivery queue)
- Example in same directory as these slides
- cmu.edu addresses
- email@example.com (no cs) should work; telnet cmu.edu for more info.
- What to tell external people
- David_Eckhardt@cs.cmu.edu (@ri.cmu.edu, @edrc.cmu.edu)
- firstname.lastname@example.org (@ri.cmu.edu, @edrc.cmu.edu)
- thread-following; tree display
- strn - virtual newsgroups, pre-scored sortings of newsgroups
- Might be what you want
- X-only, of course
- Somewhat server-piggish
Netnews (How To Read News Like A Grad Student)
- Which groups to read
- library, library.announce
- cmu.cs.csd.students.phd, cmu.cs.drc
- cmu.cs.discussion, cmu.cs.opinion (but be careful!)
- cmu.cs.unix.forum, cmu.cs.facilities
- cmu.cs.market, cmu.misc.market (,.*), pa.general, pgh.general, pgh.food
- comp.org.eff.news, comp.risks
- run newsgroups for (too much) more info
Netnews (How To Post News Like A Grad Student)
- Use Headers Carefully
- Don't cross-post
(especially not between local & external groups)
- Be really, really specific (think Signal-to-Noise ratio!)
- Don't: "For sale", "Help", "A Request"
- Do: "How Can I Format My Maxtor M330 Disk?"
- Do: "Moving Sale"; "Selling 1984 Toyota Tercel"; ...
- People should be able to look at only this line
- High bandwidth; do you want to graduate?
- High bandwidth, massive flames; do NOT post without reading for a while.
- Do you want to have any friends in the department?
- General Idea
- announcements, weak user location service, dynamic conversation groups
- send to users without needing to know where they are logged in
- zwrite vac lily rhp -m Lunchtime!
- zctl add/sub message tennis `*' (permanent/temporary)
- zctl add/sub message `*' `*' (all broadcast messages)
- zwrite -i help
- tennis, freefood, weather-temp, fortune
- facilities.announce - Server pumpkin is down; etc
- facilities.discussion - Is anybody else seeing nameserver timeouts?
- unix-forum - How do I get awk to ...
- help - Can anybody jumpstart my car?
- xbiff the modern way
- Alternate interface for GNU Emacs users
- Very configurable
- Clickable hyperlinks, faces of message authors
- (load-library "zephyr")
- ^C-? for help
- How are people using Zephyr?
- Recent instances: zwrite -i instances toad -m ''
- Zephyr Logs
Other Instant Communication
- talk user@host
- most immediate (non-telephone) conversation
- only one user
- doesn't work between SunOS machines and any other kind
- may confuse Andrew users
- may guess tty wrong
- The Telephone
- Walk over to somebody's office
A Note on Free Speech and the RPP
- Reasonable Person Principle
- In general, don't try to offend.
- In general, if you are offended, assume it was accidental.
- In general, if you offended somebody, apologize.
- Divisive Issues
- Free Speech Areas
- most Zephyr instances
- Time-indexed event databases (movies, talks, IC)
- Can have personal database
- How to read
- cboard (not "cb", a C beautifier)
- How to post
- Allows simultaneous posting to bboards
- What's Out There?
- prototype WWW access
- Not available on all machines right now (mea maxima culpa)
- Magic Coke Machine
- Harry Bovik's Database of Local Businesses
- Liebermann Queue (lq)
- Get Faced!
- Alex - all Internet FTP servers at your fingertips!
- file://alex.sp.cs.cmu.edu/usr0/anon/www/alex.html (needs maintainer)
- Local Acronyms
- What is it?
- software "collections" of everything from spreadsheets to hypertext
- Where is it?
- /usr/local (/usr/misc/.<collection>/* on Mach machines; note the dot)
- Some collections to check out
- cvs, gnu-others (gawk >> awk), ispell, pstools (save paper),
- perl (unified sed/awk/tr/sh - learn 1 obscure language, not 4)
- less (better pager than more), pbm (image tools galore),
- Mail to gripe^H^H^H^H^Hhelp@cs
- Who Maintains?
Libraries: CMU & Others
- X interface - library
- "VT100" (really: most ASCII terminals) Interface - lisvt
- Simpler, faster interface - lislook
- They collect data on your searches
- Ask them what, how it's protected, how long it stays around (incl. backups)
- Better WWW interface
- What is it?
- Globe-spanning, multi-protocol, interactive hypertext
- Access via NCSA Mosaic on the platform of your choice
- Type "Mosaic" or "netscape" on a Unix box; ask about Mac/PC
- Do I want it?
- How do I find things?
- How do I access something?
- Start Mosaic, click "Open...", type the URL, and hit "Open"
- If it takes too long, click on the twirling globe icon to abort
- Document Preparation
- latex vs Framemaker vs ...?
X Window System (window managers)
- Politically Correct
- Burns screen space like there's no tomorrow
- Comes from DEC
- typical Unix software (terse, medium-sized envelope)
- tvtwm, ctwm, fvwm
- virtual screens (can have some things show up in all of them)
- currently not available on all machines
- Very configurable/programmable (the emacs of window managers?)
- Loosely object-oriented somewhat-lisp
X Window System (miscellaneous)
- If your X server doesn't make your idle time available to finger
- Keyboard Remapping
- Don't suffer random vendor bogosity.
- "man xmodmap" (good luck),
- run "xkeycaps", or
- ask a companion in suffering
- old reliable; can/must start it quickly; "evil" modes; doesn't kill your pinkie
- Beware Gosling Emacs
- "emacs" on Mach machines (use gnu-emacs)
- FSF GNU emacs
- The One True emacs
- Lingua Franca of high-function editing
- Different machines have different versions - good luck!
- xemacs (once: Lucid Emacs)
- The One True emacs
- Multi-window, whizzy, X-aware derivative of GNU emacs
- Now said to work on ASCII terminals
- You may want to autosave to your local disk (not /afs)
- If Vanishing Kerberos Tickets Annoy You
- Which Password Is Which?
- Read the Facilities Guide (slowly, with a beer or two)
- How To Avoid Typing A Password
- rlogin or rsh (within many cs.cmu.edu machines)
- telnet -a hostname (potentially wider audience)
- Tickets aren't (yet) transferred to the new host, so may need to kinit