[sf-lug] Linux Users' Group of Davis, Nov. 18: Composing Command-Line Apps With "Plines"

nbs nbs at sonic.net
Sat Nov 9 19:43:43 PST 2013

The Linux Users' Group of Davis (LUGOD) will be holding the following meeting:

  November 18, 2013
  7:00pm - 9:00pm

  Composing Command-Line Apps With "Plines"
  with Micah Cowan, lead developer

    The Unix command-line environment is famed for its focus on providing
    users with many small utility programs that "do only one thing and
    do it well", combined with facilities for composing these individual
    commands together into shell pipelines that can perform relatively
    complex tasks.

    While most folks compose just a few to accomplish a short-term task,
    it's entirely possible to build complete applications by composing
    them out of many small commands.  The trouble is that managing the
    quickly-growing shell pipeline quickly becomes cumbersome.  You could
    wrap it up into a shell script, function, or alias, but then editing
    the pipeline to change options, swap in one command for another,
    and generally do all the things make shell pipelines so useful.

    Enter Plines <http://niwt.addictivecode.org/Plines>, the framework for
    building useful applications out of tiny Unix commands!  Plines allows
    you to easily build complex new commands from existing simple ones,
    retaining all the advantages and flexibility of shell pipelines, but
    providing a clean and unified interface, translating program options
    into modifications to the pipeline, and providing low-level program
    options that can be used to manipulate the pipeline in any other way
    the user sees fit.  Even better, users can extend your programs with
    new features, or add new options to its command line interface!

    This talk will focus on how Plines can be used to compose new programs
    from existing shell commands, and demonstrate how it's currently being
    used to develop a (currently incomplete) replacement for wget, named
    Niwt (Nifty Integrated Web Tools) <http://niwt.addictivecode.org/>.
    It will also touch on the advantages, and disadvantages, of using Unix
    shell pipelines to build advanced programs.

About the speaker:
  Micah Cowan is the creator and maintainer of Niwt, and was the
  maintainer/lead developer for GNU Wget from June of 2007 until
  January of 2010.

This meeting will be held at:

  Explorti Nature Center
  3141 5th Street
  Davis, California 95616

For more details on this meeting, visit:


For maps, directions, public transportation schedules, etc., visit:


About LUGOD:

  The Linux Users' Group of Davis is a 501(c)7 non-profit organization
  dedicated to the Linux computer operating system and other Open Source
  and Free Software.

  Since 1999, LUGOD has held regular meetings with guest speakers
  in Davis, California, as well as other events in Davis and the greater
  Sacramento region.  Events are always free and open to the public.

  You can 'like' LUGOD on Facebook at:
  join the LUGOD group on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/lugod/
  and find us on LinkedIn at: http://www.linkedin.com/groups?gid=35879

  Please visit our website for more details:  http://www.lugod.org/

Bill Kendrick
pr at lugod.org
Public Relations Officer
Linux Users' Group of Davis

(Your address: sf-lug at linuxmafia.com )

More information about the sf-lug mailing list