The Command-line Ecosystem… hidden on your Mac
Sunday, May 10th, 2009
Taught by Gregory Whitescarver
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A hands-on introduction to the command line, specifically the Bash shell, which is present on all Macs (OSX only) and tons of web servers. Gain comfort with basic tasks like navigating directories, viewing and editing files, and logging into remote servers. Users will create a small script that emails them the weather forecast every day.
A Mac with OSX installed (if you have a PC, sorry — if there’s enough interest in a PC version of this tutorial, we’ll work out a second session).
What is this thing?
The command line is just another way to operate your computer. There is no substitute for a good graphic user interface (GUI) and a mouse for normal computer operation, but the command line provides access to features not provided by the GUI and a more fine-grained level of control. The command line is also a very efficient way to directly interact with remote computers, such as a web server.
Who should care about the command line?
The command line is useful for programmers and systems administrators (sysadmins). While you may not be a professional programmer or sysadmin, running a web site or tinkering with computers may require you to wear those hats.