• Linux]

    Operating System: [The command line is a beautiful thing. RedHat on the desktop, Debian on the server. Note that I often become extremely frustrated with this thing of beauty, and secretly lust after OS X.

  • Bash]

    Shell: [I'd been using Tcsh until recently because it was the default on my first Unix account, but when I realized that I do all my scripting in Bash and found out about Bash's over-the-top command completion, that's when I made the switch.

  • Screen]

    Console: [Yes, virtual consoles are nifty. But screen gives you more power: it lets you detach, spy on open sessions, copy and paste between windows, and several other features that I haven't even discovered yet.

  • Perl]

    Language: [It's too easy to get sucked into Perl when you are learning to code on your own, and with CPAN available you feel like you can do just about anything. I've dipped my toes into C, but never needed that much power. I'm flirting with Python, whose obsession with making everything an object is a little scary, but the structure of the language (relative to Perl's) is actually empowering.

  • Emacs]

    Text Editing: [Modes provide custom indentation, completion, and coloration settings. PSGML mode for editing XHTML documents, Perl mode for code, fundamental mode for CSS. Why not vi? When I first started with Emacs, I used it for more than just writing code. I find that Emacs's WYSIWYG style is more amenable to writing prose. By now, I've put so much time into it that the sunk cost would make switching too large a risk to bear.

  • Bloglines]

    Feed Aggregating: [Cross-platform means linux-friendly, web-based means location-independent and sync-problem free.

  • Pine]

    Mail Reading: [The other day, I found myself with six screen windows, each open to Pine running on a different server. I'm pretty much stuck on this program, but not particularly attached to it. Once Elmo matures, it may be a suitable challenger.

Other software I use on a weekly basis but am not particularly attached to:

But when it all comes down to it, the only things I really need on a computer are a Mozilla-based browser, and an SSH client to telnet back home.


You should check out the Mutt email client as a Pine replacement. It's hella sexy, although slightly less intuitive than Pine. - George

Hey thanks for the reminder George. I tried mutt several years ago and gave it up because I was too impatient to configure it properly. It's about time to take a look at it again. - MicahSittig

Now now :), Java's the object-obsessed-programming language. Python can seem that way because of its easy access to magic / language introspection, but hell, I'd rather have self to ignore than not have it at all! - Brian

Hey Micah, you should try Conky as a replacement for GKrellM! It is much nicer and more flexible, but misses some of the dynamic aspects of GKrellM. - matsch