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Help Define This Meaning...

By chalice4u ·
"You can't grep dead trees." This comes from a Unix environment.

I am new at this and find myself perplexed by this adage, any thoughts?

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Help Define This Meaning...

by SyscoKid In reply to Help Define This Meaning. ...

It means you can't do a text search with paper documentation. "Hackers seldom read paper documentation and (too) often resist writing it; they prefer theirs to be terse and on-line. A common comment on this predilection is 'You can't grep dead trees'".

Found at
http://www.clueless.com/jargon3.0.0/documentation.html

See also

http://www.uoguelph.ca/~pjf/You_can't_grep_dead_trees.html

(Sometimes when I cut and paste URL's it looks ok to me but once the answer is posted, an extraneousspace will have crept in. Make sure you delete any extraneous spaces or the page won't load).

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Help Define This Meaning...

by SyscoKid In reply to Help Define This Meaning. ...

Oh yeah, "grep" specifically means to rapidly scan a file or set of files looking for a particular string or pattern.

http://www.clueless.com/jargon3.0.0/grep.html

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Help Define This Meaning...

by chalice4u In reply to Help Define This Meaning. ...

Thanks for the site referance. Your answer was right on the mark.

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Help Define This Meaning...

by shiny_topadm In reply to Help Define This Meaning. ...

One thing that accompanies almost every technology is specific jargon, and Unix may have the oddest sounding! 'grep' refers to a global search command, which returns matches to the standard output file and 'dead trees' refers to paper documentation. A common reason in favor of documentation in computer files instead of on paper is that you can't [use a computer to] search the paper documentation. There are several good jargon dictionaries out there and it's good to become familiar with thosethat apply to your environment...HTH (as in 'hope this helps') ---Will

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Help Define This Meaning...

by shiny_topadm In reply to Help Define This Meaning. ...

Sorry for the redundant answer, there wasn't anything posted (ASyscoKid's answer) when I started. There appears to be a 10 to 15 minute delay when posting to this site from my location, but only sometimes!

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Help Define This Meaning...

by chalice4u In reply to Help Define This Meaning. ...

Your answer was right on, more 'human'and personable.... Normally communication is so restricted in the Tech environment. I like that. Thanks...

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Help Define This Meaning...

by chalice4u In reply to Help Define This Meaning. ...

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