[its-hackers] File name wild cards

Jack Haverty jack at 3kitty.org
Mon May 31 22:52:58 CEST 2021

IIRC, there was never any "wild card" mechanism in ITS, other than the 
use of <> characters.   Most common was just a numeric second name to 
represent a version number.   But for things where you didn't want any 
ambiguity, some unique FN2 would be used.

In the MIT-DM group, there was at one point in the 70s a scheme for 
documentation established, called "Convention 2" (I don't remember there 
being a Convention 1).   I think that's where the notion was created of 
second names combining the username with a version number.   There was a 
big push to create "libraries" of software, putting the relevant files 
into a common directory;  prior to that, everyone mostly kept their 
files in their own directory.

But I don't think there wasn't anything special in ITS to treat such 
names differently.   If you used an FN2 of <loginname><version>, the > 
and < would typically pick out the file you expected.   Any specific 
file was typically created and evolved by one user, so the <loginname> 
part of that file's name wouldn't change.

For what cases does <> not work?   I think of <> as like the Unix shell 
* convention, but selecting the file name with the numeric biggest or 
smallest result if there's more than one match. So it should always find 
something if there's any match on FN1. (<> is something I've always 
wished Unix had too.....)

/Jack Haverty
JFH at MIT-DM 1970-1977

On 5/31/21 11:19 AM, rrs0 at earthlink.net wrote:
> Hi Everyone,
> Its been 40+ years since MIT-DMS, I have forgotten wild cards in ITS file names. Still remember "<" ">" for the second file name. I am starting to add file system support too "TT:RRS;ITSPKG >", the muddle package system I'm building. I want to
> Find muddle packages in my and other directories to load. Picking second file names to search for is the hard part. For me FN1 MUD or FN1 URSxxx wild work. Most of the time FN2 equal to ">" would work, What should I pick for a general
> FN2 to search for in the user directories, So far wide don't have the muddle library system to work with.
> 	Rick

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