Writing, publishing, geekdom, and errata.

Making New Fortunes (in linux)

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technology.pngAnother week, another bash script!
One of the things I love about scripting things like this is getting to know what's really going on inside my computer. I'm that way about most things - sure, it's nice to have things "just do", but I also want to know why they're just doing. Maybe I'll never use that information, maybe I'll need it tomorrow.
These scripts are usually for things that I needed that other people didn't provide. For example, the fortune command in *nix.
Fortune's pretty cool - it randomly pops up a quotation whenever you log in or invoke it. You can pipe the output through cows and get output like this:

 _______________________________________
/ Have a place for everything and keep  \
| the thing somewhere else; this is not |
| advice, it is merely custom.          |
|                                       |
\ -- Mark Twain                         /
 ---------------------------------------  
  \
   \   \
        \ /\
        ( )
      .( o ).
 ___________________________________
/ We own our government and are not \
\ merely its consumers.             /
 -----------------------------------
     \
      \
          oO)-.                       .-(Oo
         /__  _\                     /_  __\
         \  \(  |     ()~()         |  )/  /
          \__|\ |    (-___-)        | /|__/
          '  '--'    ==`-'==        '--'  '
 _____________________________________
/ Writing is easy; all you do is sit  \
| staring at the blank sheet of paper |
| until drops of blood form on your   |
| forehead.                           |
|                                     |
\ -- Gene Fowler                      /
 -------------------------------------
       \   ,__,
        \  (oo)____
           (__)    )\
              ||--|| *

I see cool-ass quotations everyday; there's lots of quotation tweeters out there. Many of them I'd like to add to my fortune files. Adding the text isn't hard - you just put a % between each line in the file and put the file in /usr/share/games/fortunes. Mine are in /usr/share/games/fortunes/bigquotes , for example. But it's got to run a database command to create this other file and... well, I wanted to automate it. I'm lazy.
The bash script below adds a ONE LINE QUOTATION to the file bigquotes and compiles it for use with the fortune program.
You can download the code to examine or run directly here


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