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Re: BS in rxvt+ncurses

> I heard that the original DEC vt100? terminals had delete there and so they

Nope.  The VT100 *actually* had both keys there:

     |   ||DL|
     |   |+--+
  +--+   |+--+
  | RET	 ||\||

where "RET" was labeled RETURN, "DL" was labeled "DELETE", "BK" was
labeled BREAK, and BS was labeled "BACK SPACE" (one word above the
other.)  The arrow keys were a row of up down left right, with right
directly above backspace.

In the days of the vt100 ("when dinosaurs roamed the machine room")
backspace *meant* "move the cursor back one space".  It did *not* mean
delete anything.  This was compatible with printing terminals.  It was
often used for accents (e backspace ') or APL (quad backspace quote,
but you needed a vt102 with the right character roms to handle that
one.)  In the former case, the OS (well, the front end processor
actually) saw the e, echoed it, saw the backspace, echoed it, then saw
the ' and echoed é (well, whatever the local terminal description had
for that, it wasn't ISO8859-1 that early.)

The point of this is only to provide a history lesson.  I *don't*
think that "what a vt100 does" is a particularly useful data point for
this argument.  (Also, I'm in favor of making Ian's detailed plan
policy, just to end the arguments -- we've had thousands of messages
(hundreds in the bugsystem alone) on the subject, without any
otherwise notable progress.)

			_Mark_ <eichin@kitten.gen.ma.us>
			The Herd of Kittens
			Debian X Maintainer

ps. Of course the behaviour in paragraph 2 has nothing to do with unix
either; unix terminal handling is far too primitive for that.  Long
Live Multics :-)

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