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 Text Processing Utility, the core of several DEC text editors

 Maintainer: HewlettPackard
     (for EVE)
 Family:     DecFamily
 Platform:   VAX/VMS, OpenVMS
 License:    Commercial

It fully uses the Dec VTxxx series of terminal keyboards. Thus, it uses keys like the SELECT and INSERT HERE keys as expected. When issuing a command to the built-in command line processor, simply press the DO key. Help is available from the HELP Key.

This makes TPU a very easy to learn text editor. Simply press the keys that are labeled as you expect, and you get the expected behavior.

TPU itself is not an editor. Rather, it's a text processing utility and language which you can use to write an editor. The primary editor that comes with TPU is EVE, and TPU and EVE have spawned variants like LSEDIT?, WEVE, and ADAM. EVE was DEC's replacement for EDT, and EVE includes customizations to make it look like EDT for users used to that interface. --DMcCunney

Like most powerful text editors, the TPU engine contains a powerful programming language as well. The TPU language is a macro language that looks a lot like ADA?. That is, it is a Pascal language derivative like Delphi from Borland. It has a large number of built-in procedures and functions that you can call to invoke just about any built-in function.

TPU is rather unique in its ability to provide "bound" and "unbound" cursor motion. Simply put, unbound means the cursor can move anywhere on the screen, even past the end of line characters. Bound means that the cursor must stay between newlines and the first character on a line. Bound is the behavior of most editors such as ViFamily and EmacsFamily editors.

The TPU language is used as the basis for customizing TPU into EVE and LSE (LSEDIT, the Language-Sensitive Editor).

TPU is available only on VAX/VMS and OpenVMS operating systems. However, there is an editor called nuTPU which implements the TPU functionality for other platforms such as Linux and Windows.

You might say that TPU was DEC's answer to the Emacs Family of editors, which boast rich functionality and fanatical users. TPU is very customizable, yet never really attained the loyalty that Emacs or even XEDIT achieved.

The keyboard layout is usually the EVE keyboard layout, though there is a native TPU keyboard layout, as well as EDT and LSEDIT layouts.

The TPU language is powerful enough to emulate .... VI. Here's where the 'VAXMAN' did it:

SteveLong?, SharonBurlingame?, and TerrellMitchell? designed and implemented the VAX Text Processing Utility ( TPU ).


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Last edited February 11, 2013 1:47 pm (diff)