Inspirational Andy Dwyer Quotes For My Command Line
On Friday I was procrastinating by reading some command line tricks articles and I encountered three commands I haven’t noticed before:
lolcat. A little bit earlier someone also posted this Buzzfeed article with inspirational Andy Dwyer quotes and one thing let to another.
To get inspirational Andy Dwyer quotes into your terminal you need four things:
fortune (to display a quote),
cowsay (to make a cow say the quote),
lolcat (for the rainbow coloring) and, of course, the quotes. On a Mac you can use Homebrew to install
$ brew install fortune cowsay
lolcat is a Ruby program and can you can install it using RubyGems:
$ sudo gem install lolcat
Let’s try these three programs out.
lolcat is first.
You can pipe input to
cowsay to make it appear in a speak bubble on top of a cow.
cowsay has some options to change the eyes and the tongue and even use a different animal, for example, a dragon.
$ echo "Hello World!" | cowsay _____________ < Hello World > ------------- \ ^__^ \ (oo)\_______ (__)\ )\/\ ||----w | || ||
If you call
fortune without any arguments it will print a random quote.
$ fortune Felson's Law: To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism; to steal from many is research.
The default database contains some pretty sexist quotes, as you sadly can expect from something written by white males. But I want to use my own database anyway. The format of a quotes file is pretty simple. You separate the quotes by a single
% on a newline.
My whole life is a giant mess and I love it -- Andy Dwyer % I know what things are. -- Andy Dwyer % You're like an angel with no wings. -- Andy Dwyer
fortune program reads compiled data files and we can use
strfile to create these:
$ strfile andy andy.dat
I can now call
fortune with this quote file and it will only show quotes from the given file:
$ fortune andy
You can also find these files in my dotfiles repository. There is also a file with Tyrion Lannister quotes.
Piping it All Together
If I now call
fortune, pipe the output into
cowsay and then pipe its output into
lolcat I get the result displayed in the first screenshot.
$ fortune ~/dotfiles/fortune/andy | cowsay -s | lolcat
I placed this line in my
.bash_profile file and now every time I open a terminal window I get an inspirational Andy Dwyer quote.