In August 1989, 20 years ago, Mr. Augie Hansen wrote a column in UNIX/World’s New to UNIX column entitled Lost and Found.

On the four-page spread he discusses the grep and find tools and shows the reader how to create a recursive grep, a bit like ack! in spirit, but much simpler.

I used to adore those articles, as well as Rebecca Thomas’ Wizzard’s Grabbag column in the same magazine, Axel T. Schreiner’s Unix Sprechstunde in unix/mail, and many others. Unfortunately, those, and many other periodicals I avidly read, don’t exist any longer. SysAdmin, another excellent magazine for UNIX system administrators, also ceased publication sometime in 2007, if memory serves me right.

Twenty years – a long time.

In all those years, I’ve kept articles such as that above. Piles and stacks of original clippings and photocopied articles. There must be well over two thousand pages (not the full magazines with all advertisements, etc.) – just the articles, read and read again, time after time a long time ago.

Today is cleanup day at casa Mens. Spring cleaning, so to speak. (Although we’re far from spring, as this photo I took this morning proves.) Piles of paper, bucketfuls of folders, cables, and knickknack, is all going to the bin on Monday morning, together with plenty of hardware: an old Sun workstation, two monitors, several keyboards and mice, etc. (I disposed of the software a year and a half ago.)

Mr. Hansen writes his office sometimes looks like it has seen a massive earthquake. So does mine usually, as anybody who’s seen it can attest to. But today it is looking much neater. I’ve found lots I thought was lost.

Home, Unix, and magazines :: 09 Jan 2010 :: e-mail