Tuesday, we linked to an interview with one of the creators of AWK, over at ComputerWorld. From the same series comes an interview with Chat Ramney, maintainer of BASH, the Bourne Again Shell. BASH is the default shell on most UNIX systems, and has been ported to Windows, MS-DOS, the Amiga, and just about everywhere else.Where AWK grew out of a personal need, a solution to a specific problem, BASH grew out of more idealistic goals. Richard Stallman needed replacements for all common UMIX utilities for the GNU operating system, and this included a POSIX-compliant UNIX shell. “When Richard Stallman decided to create a full replacement for the then-encumbered Unix systems, he knew that he would eventually have to have replacements for all of the common utilities, especially the standard shell, and those replacements would have to have acceptable licensing.”
I think Bash’s legacy is as a solid piece of infrastructure, and the shell making millions of Linux, Mac OS X, and Solaris systems work every day.
As I recall, it was one of the first couple of programs Linus Torvalds made run on his early Linux kernels.