some bees nest stirring, was just how much can you do with?

Christopher Chaltain chaltain at
Mon Mar 4 19:52:13 UTC 2013

On 03/04/2013 01:38 PM, Karen Lewellen wrote:
> ...You are avoiding the dos ports question councilor.
> I personally have never in all my years of  computing needed to do
> anything like the below.
> I have  two hands and two ears, and believe each task deserves my full
> attention.
> Besides I can do them so fast in dos anyway that by the time I needed to
> do this It is over.
> Multitasking strikes me as a windows thing because windows  works so badly.
> I can listen to a cd while working in dos now if I want to use the
> computer for that, but why?  It is what  my real stereo is for lol.
> ...but again this is totally only and uniquely me.
> I would never wish to suggest that anyone else on the planet computes
> like me.
> such is the  beauty of PC as in *personal* computer.
> Now speak to the ports of Linux things professor!

I won't speak to the DOS ports point, but multitasking predates Windows 
by quite a bit. It's been available on Unix probably since the beginning.

I could not go back to DOS myself and put up with a single tasking 
system. I want to be able to leave my place in an editor or an email 
message while I look something up. I want to be able to start a download 
and go onto something else while I'm waiting for the download to finish. 
I want to be able to kick off a make or a compile that will take a while 
and go back to checking my email. I want to kick off the conversion of a 
batch of .wmv files to .mp3 files, and I don't want to have to sit 
around and wait for that to finish.

Windows is not multi-tasking because it does things so poorly. It's 
multi-tasking because people want to run multiple tasks at the same time 
just like you can in Unix and other operating systems.

> On Mon, 4 Mar 2013, Tim Chase wrote:
>> On March  4, 2013, Karen Lewellen wrote:
>> Still if elinks and mplayer exist ported for DOS, why go through
>>> the extreme mayhem of finding someone local enough to learn speakup
>>> and ora and so forth to teach me in the first place?
>> Well, to be able to use Linux which excels at multi-tasking.  So
>> even on the console (without a GUI or Orca), you can run yasr/speakup
>> to read the screen, but then use either GNU "screen" or "tmux" to run
>> multiple virtual terminals within that one yasr/speakup session.  Thus
>> you can be browsing with lynx in one process (or more), reading email
>> in another, playing music in another, have your audio-mixer up all the
>> time in another (allowing you to adjust the audio on the fly while
>> other stuff is running), managing files in yet another, etc.  I
>> remember using DOS and having various TSR
>> (terminate-and-stay-resident) programs to fake multi-tasking but they
>> never worked very well for me.
>> The virtual terminals are cheaply created, usually with the
>> tmux/screen prefix key followed by "c" (for "create").  You can then
>> switch between the virtual terminals by using the tmux/screen prefix
>> key followed either by "n" (next) or "p" (previous) or by directly
>> jumping to the numbered window with the corresponding number key.  In
>> both tmux and screen, the key mappings are also configurable.
>> An added benefit of using tmux/screen is that the sessions can be
>> detached and then reconnected-to, even from another computer.  So you
>> might be downstairs working on the Linux box, then go upstairs to
>> your workhorse machine and telnet/ssh into your Linux box and
>> instruct it to reattach to the session and you can pick up right
>> where you left off.  All without losing any of your work or running
>> programs.
>> -tim
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Christopher (CJ)
chaltain at Gmail

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