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Re: Usenet/Listserv... Steve.Cavrak@UVM.EDU 11 Dec 1991 14:37 UTC

Wilfred Drew (call me "BILL") writes:

     "This is a very good discussion.  I would like to know how this
     could possibly happen with such fast turnaround time if this
     discussion were over USENET instead of a listserver?"

The turn around time is about the same - more important is whether
the group is moderated or open, and then whether it is digested or

     "Also, are there NEWSNET readers available for VMS machines that
     have not implemented UNIX?"

Yes and no.  Have I missed something re NEWSNET and am I getting it
confused with netnews - readers that interact with the NNTP (network
news transfer protocol)?  There are a variety of news (and mail)
readers on all systems: IBM mainframes, VAX/VMS, the many colors of
Unix, Macintosh, MS-DOS, Windows.  (Though I don't particularly know
the names of the various IBM mainframe type NNTP clients - other than
those that run under AIX.)

What is important is, I believe, a set of mail / news / file / access
tools that work in compatible ways.  The news reader should allow the
user to reply using that users favorite mail interface (which in itself
calls the users favorite editor.)  Most systems allow this - but users
often have difficulty in discovering how to configure the system so
that the commands and function keys and menus and stuff don't clash
with each other.

Which points out a particular advantage to the UNIX approach (and
helps address the complaint "My computer center nixes unix."), much of
the work can be done on small machines by "student" talent.  Someone
is always trying to make things work better.  UNIX is what they can
most easily get their hands on: Walden books and Little Professor all
carry volumes of UNIX stuff, nothing on CMS, MVS, or VMS.  And if the
computer center won't let the students play on their machines, the CS
department will.