Kuro5hin.org: Essential Linux Bookshelf IV: Unix Power Tools

[ Thanks to Paul
for this link. ]

“While the rest of the world points and clicks in a scary little
world of icons, all alike, we in the world of Unix get to use a
good old-fashioned CLI, or command line interface. One reason why
the command-line has remained so pervasive in Unix environments is
that the implementation, the Unix shell in its various
incarnations, is actually pretty damn good. However, one problem
has always been getting enough information in suitable format to
enable one to make the most of the shell’s power and capabilities.
Unix Power Tools admirably fills this gap. The book is an
unparallelled source for the small everyday things that make using
a command line interface so much easier — if you know them. And
there’s the rub: if you know them; but where to find them? Unix
Power Tools is a compendium of this much-needed information, often
culled from obscure sources. There are many gems from Usenet here
— not a place one would go looking very often today for solid
information of this kind.”

“I’d been running Linux for over a year before I bought this
book. I fondly imagined I was pretty nifty with the old Unix
Environment. Well, I learned different.
The amount of stuff I
picked up out of this book is incalculable. It is like an
encyclopaedia for Unix users. I said “users”, and that’s important;
you won’t find any admin or networking stuff here. The former
omission is only to be expected, but the latter is a pity — a
brief tutorial on mail(1) wouldn’t have gone amiss, for example.
But, when you consider that the book runs to over a thousand pages
as it is, you begin to understand.”

“Every time I dip into this weighty tome, I seem to come up with
something new. A case in point is pcal, which i discovered browsing
one slow afternoon (when I should have been working on an article;
but that’s another story). Pcal is a program for generating
Postscript calendars, with a rich command-language enabling the
user to describe repeating events, one-offs, etc.”

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