get you a shell
\ ^__^ \ (oo)\_______ (__)\ )\/\ ||----w | || ||
Last fall, I forgot my laptop at work, but I wanted to write something.
And then I remembered that I had a Raspberry Pi sitting around.
So I set it up and started writing things on it.
And I got to thinking: This is just a stupid Linux computer without any graphics.
There’s nothing here but the command line and some programs that do stuff to plain text files.
And this is how I am happiest as a writer.
Not as a programmer, or a clever unix dork, but as a writer.
$ cowthink I should write a book about this. ___________________________________ ( I should write a book about this. ) ----------------------------------- o ^__^ o (oo)\_______ (__)\ )\/\ ||----w | || ||
So here’s my thesis:
Wizards are cool and all, but most of us aren’t wizards.
Most of us are just bumbling through life.
A lot of us like to make stuff anyway.
Unix is for that.
…except what classical Unix really looks like is this:
And a lot of the time, modern Unix-like systems look like this:
…which isn’t actually that unfamiliar, right?
At SparkFun, we do a lot of stuff over serial.
Once upon a time, most of the interfaces to Really Serious Computers – the ones at universities and in government – worked like debugging Arduino code over a serial port.
The computer prints stuff, you type stuff to the computer, the computer prints stuff. It’s just text in a box.
Even once we got PCs in our houses, a lot of the interfaces shared this heritage. Remember DOS? Ever have to fire up cmd.exe on Windows?
In 2014, the Serious way you interact with Serious Computers – the ones that most of the internet runs on – is still through a text terminal.
If you stop by my desk at work, my screen probably looks like this:
But we’re not here to talk about Serious Computers.
We’re here to talk about how the command line is for normal human beings.
YOU ARE STANDING AT THE END OF A ROAD BEFORE A SMALL BRICK BUILDING. AROUND YOU IS A FOREST. A SMALL STREAM FLOWS OUT OF THE BUILDING AND DOWN A GULLY. > GO EAST YOU ARE INSIDE A BUILDING, A WELL HOUSE FOR A LARGE SPRING. THERE ARE SOME KEYS ON THE GROUND HERE. THERE IS A SHINY BRASS LAMP NEARBY. THERE IS FOOD HERE. THERE IS A BOTTLE OF WATER HERE.
Now is where Brennen goes to the shell and fumbles around in front of an audience.
So that’s the shell. Want a shell?
I will give you a shell right now. Talk to me.