[Rd] Source code of early S versions

Barry Rowlingson b.rowlingson at lancaster.ac.uk
Mon Feb 29 19:54:40 CET 2016

On Mon, Feb 29, 2016 at 6:17 PM, John Chambers <jmc at r-project.org> wrote:
> The Wikipedia statement may be a bit misleading.
> S was never open source.  Source versions would only have been available with a nondisclosure agreement, and relatively few copies would have been distributed in source.  There was a small but valuable "beta test" network, mainly university statistics departments.

So it was free (or at least distribution cost only), but with a
nondisclosure agreement? Did binaries circulate freely, legally or
otherwise? Okay, guess I'll read the book.

 I'm sure I saw S source early in my career (1990 or so), possibly on
an early Sun 3/60 system or even the on-the-way-out Whitechapel MG-1

> And two shameless plugs:
> 1.  there is a chapter on the history of all this in my forthcoming book on "Extending R"

 That will sit nicely on the shelf next to "Extending The S System"
that Allan Wilks gave me :)

> PS:  somehow "historical" would be less unnerving than "archeological"

 At least I didn't say palaeontological.

Thanks for the response.


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