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6. AWK > Bits That Change the Universe

Bits That Change the Universe

Is it true that the beginning of AWK was a discussion that you had with Al Aho about adding a parser for extensible languages to your database project?

Peter Weinberger: That’s not how I remember it, although memory is fallible. I worked in a department that dealt with data (on Univac computers), and Al and Brian were interested in adding something database-ish to the Unix commands. It’s possible that they had started with even more ambitious plans, but my recollection is that we decided early that scanning data was a productive way to go.

Why did you choose to focus on a tool to extract information from files? Why did you avoid the feature to insert data, for example?


  

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