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Re: LYNX-DEV lynx -

From: Klaus Weide
Subject: Re: LYNX-DEV lynx -
Date: Mon, 28 Oct 1996 10:07:03 -0600 (CST)

I wrote:
> >On some systems (e.g. Linux), the following works:
> >
> >   cat /home/httpd-data/iso8859-1.html|lynx -dump -force_html /dev/fd/0

(BTW I have to partially retract that, "it works" under some circumstances
abut not under others...)
> >Or write a shell script that creates a temporary file and then -dumps
> >that.
On Mon, 28 Oct 1996, Scott McGee (Personal) wrote:

> Klaus! What's up with the hard way of doing it? The simple command:
>    lynx -dump <filename> 
> should do just fine! Use an absolute or relative path [...]

Yeah, of course that works, but Scott, that line has the fatal flaw that 

Real Unix users want to pipe data into programs.  They cannot be truely
happy without that.  If a Real Unix user[1] finds a program he likes, he just
HAS to try to build a pipeline with it, if it seems to make even remotely
sense.  Piping stuff into programs is a way of living and thinking. Users
of other operating systems cannot understand it.[2] That's the real problem
with GUIs: you cannot put them in a pipe.[3]

There is a certain beauty[4] to being able to pipe some data into a program 
as standard input, let it do its thing, and get the result on standard
output, all without a single disk block being written (or read).[5]

Adding this capability to Lynx wouldn't make it more of a file viewer IMHO
(sort isn't a file viewer, the CERN/W3C LineMode Browser which had or has
that capability is not a file viewer), it just would make it more of a
unixish tool than what it, probably, needs to be or wants to be, but that
is something that would make a hardcore Real Unix user truely happy...

[1] Insert (TM) symbol where appropriate.
[2] Probably nobody can, really.  Except for fans of CMS PIPES.[6]      
[3] Insert smileys where appropriate, throughout.
[4] isn't there?
[5] Data could come from a network process.
[6] FWIW I could read that 80 character fixed reclen cardpunch IBM mainframe
    document that Fote gave as an example just fine with Lynx on a Linux
    console with 80 chars per line, withouth an external file viewer, by
    lying to Linux and telling it `stty columns 81' before invoking Lynx,
    but I don't say it's a good idea or should be recommended.  'Cause it
    isn't, and it shouldn't. That's why I am hiding that trick down here. 

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