Six Colors
Six Colors

by Jason Snell & Dan Moren

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By Jason Snell

Applications Folder: Past meets future

In the fall of 1988 as a new freshman at UC San Diego, I put my high-school newspaper skills to use and volunteered to edit copy for the Revelle College newsletter. This being a serious, science-focused school, the editor instructed me to go to the first floor of the Applied Physics and Mathematics building and get a Unix account, after which he would teach me the basics of editing stories using something called vi.

Learn Unix and vi so you can edit stories for a college newsletter? Talk about overkill. But I was excited to have an excuse to get access to the university computer system, and so I got an account and learned the ins and outs of vi. The next year I moved on to my university-wide newspaper, where we much more sensibly used Macs and Microsoft Word, and my Unix skills remained frozen in time.

Funny how things turn out.…

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