Using terminal applications instead of GUI applications has the definitive speed advantage of not having to spend some time on moving a cursor to a 2D coordinate on the screen but instead just doing a 2mm downward motion with one or two fingers. I wonder if something other than terminal applications will allow me to interact with my computer faster until the invention of direct neural interfaces.
I really like terminal applications - not only because of the speed advantage but also because they offer much more real-estate in terms of usable screen space as they dont waste space on stuff like buttons, menu bars or all those pixels wasted on separators and the space between UI elements. Starting to use the pentadactyl firefox extension was not only a huge browsing speed improvement for me but I could also finally use my whole frickin 1920x1080 pixels for viewing the website (well except for a 19 pixels status bar at the bottom).
scriptreplay(1), being part of the bsdutils package in
debian/ubuntu and the util-linux package in rpm based distribution will
probably also already be installed on your system and is one of those really
handy tools you did not know of before even though they were always there.
script is a program that you can use to capture a terminal session or console
application output whereas
scriptreplay is able to replay that session by
using a timing file that
script is able to output on stderr. Without the
timings file, the typescript will include all terminal interaction and is
readily readable with a text editor or printable or easily uploadable to a
pastebin (no more selecting parts of your terminal window with your mouse and
copy-pasting that into the browser). Without the timing file it is useful to
document a process - for example if you want to show others how a bug happened
on your system or for a homework submission you have to hand in.
A very powerful feature is the mentioned timingfile you can capture by
stderr output of
script into a file. With the use of
scriptreplay you can then watch your terminal interaction in real time.
While it would be kinda tedious to share your typescript and timingfile over a
pastebin so that a party would have to download those manually and use
scriptreplay to watch them, I imagined a kind of youtube for terminal
sessions. This would also solve the problem of all those youtube videos that
are screen captures of terminal windows - needlessly encoding text as moving
images and by that not only destroying the ability to copy&paste things but
also needlessly increasing the filesize.
I remembered having seen such a website years ago but dont manage to find it again. To show a proof of concept I prepared the following website:
I will probably never have the time to make a real webservice out of it but maybe something of this is useful for others.