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problems with the deal

    Date: 4 Jun 1981 08:42:53-PDT
    From: CSVAX.fateman at Berkeley

    2. Multics macsyma is neither pleasant nor cheap, by my reckoning,
    especially since mit-mc is free, if you can get on.  (this
    is possibly going to improve).

As I have a personal stake in this i feel I should comment on this.
I like multics a lot, it has semi infinite address space, has ~ 1/2 the
absoulte cpu speed of MC's KL-10 and an awful lot of nice software,
including a BONAFIDE EMACS written in lisp. I do a lot of work there
and enjoy it. If I had my own VAX and used macsyma every day I would
get a license. If I used macsyma 1 day a week I might not bother. If I used
it once a month I would surely use Multics. By a computer scientists
point of view the Multics user interface may seem primitive but most
"serious" macsyma users have little trouble with it. 

If I were considering getting a Macsyma for my vax I'd surely try out
the one on Multics first, Then I'd also want to try out one on a VAX,
I'm told that 4 Macsyma's is about all a BIG Vax can handle, although
RJF can say more about that. At one point on a smaller machine with
only 2 cpu's and less memory Multics ran between 10 and 15.

Look before you leap and there will be less chance of dissapointment.