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"Instead of learning how to run an Xbox, he's learned how to run bash. I like that."
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28 comments
 
This could prove to be a good skill in the future.
 
I grew up on the command line because that was all there was. DOS 5.22 with 8 disks for Word Perfect. We did get a color monitor and could play games with 8 bit color. 
 
That's great! By showing them the underlying world first, you make sure they don't end up thinking GUIs are everything and that command line is uninteresting and too hard to use.
 
Love it. Structured thinking instead of a mouthbreathing consumer mentality, that will definitely be a good start for those kids.
 
He's learning the way the current masters once learned. :)
 
Has anyone actually read the article? Title seems to completely misrepresent the article... From the sounds of it, the kids got much more excited about the GUI with the trash can and the paint app rather than the command line. 
 
So, what did this 3 year old do for almost 2 years using only the command line?  I smell bullshit.
 
Reminds me of our old DOS computer when I was 5 or 6. The only thing I knew was how to start Paint to draw things :D
 
How could the kid use the command line if the kid can't read?  Don't know too many literate 3-year olds.
 
Good plan if you're raising your child to compete in 1975...
 
ugh.
I grew up using the command line.
On vinyl.
 
My problem - I keep forgetting and trying to use C/PM commands in the Terminal window.  I must be old.
 
Wish my kids had understood "sudo sleep 10h" when they were little. 
 
If you want to be a relevant developer or really be even remotely relevant in the high tech industry now and for the foreseeable future, you had better know how to use a command line. If your primary interaction with computers involves mainly cat videos...not so much. 
 
+Jay Deiman So you forsee that the command line will still be totally relevant and the primary interface by which technical people interface with technical things in, say, 2050?  When this kid is at the prime of his 31337 h4x0ring career?  OK.  If you say so.
 
Interesting that the article mentions the need for mouse training.  With kids growing up with touch screens from an early age this could be a real problem again.  I remember the mouse training software that came with the Apple IIgs especially the fly swatting game.
 
Command line is used far more by admins than your average dev. Unless you are developing command line applications. I never touch the command line on a day to day basis.
 
if you are a dev and you don't use the command line, you are not pushing it hard enough
 
Linux is the predominant operating system for service systems on the Web. It also powers the most popular mobile platform (and all but two of the rest). Knowing how complex systems work will certainly help kids be better developers or system admins in the future. Someone will always be using the command line. 
 
So, there's this little old thing out there called the internet.  Guess what runs that little old thing?  It's certainly not Windows or trays of Macbook Pros.  Guess what, it's all unix based operating systems.  Oh yeah, and how many of those have a GUI installed?  None.  So, you ask how relevant the command-line is?  I'd say it's pretty damn relevant, and it's going to continue to be.  Unless that little old internet thing just disappears one day.

A little bit of information for you +Dan Koerner, not all work related tasks are tuned to a GUI.  Sure, your "average joe", a graphic designer or an MBA might not have a whole lot of use for the command line (though the MBAs where I work at least have a working knowledge of it), but anyone that works on those systems that really are heavily used on the internet, or develop software for said systems, will have at least a working knowledge of the command line.  GUIs excel at certain tasks, but so does the command line.

Have you ever tried to automate something in a GUI?  Unless it's a specific feature built into said GUI, it's almost impossible.  Have you ever had to manage 10 different machines?  It's a pain in the ass for anything non-trivial if you depend on a GUI to get things done.  Now, scale that up to 1000, or even 10,000 machines.  Have fun with your crappy, tedious GUI then.  Anyone who thinks the command line is going anywhere in the future is just plain ignorant as to how things are actually getting done currently, as well as how they've been done for the last 40 years.

So you ask if there will be people using the command line in 2050?  You're damn right they will.  I don't think you're going to find systems administrators using an iPad 42 to get work done, instead it will be the same plain old text on a black background in a shell.  Why?  Because it's always been, and will continue to be, the best way to get serious computing tasks done.
 
good to see the future generation will know the command line :-) another good ratless window manager is stumpwm its very nice . xmonad is nice too .
 
this is awesome. comand line its essential in every aspect of the IT world.. so please people.. dont be silly.. 

Its like not knowing how to use a screwdriver.. i mean.. now you can use drills to unscrew thins, and robots do that on manufacturing plants... Come on, you always need to know the basics.. 

BTW, im so doing that when my time to be a father comes.. :D
 
+Jay Deiman add onto that the added overhead of running a GUI adds to the cost. At least 1GB of ram extra per box really adds up. Most of our development boxes run 1-2GB, we would have to double it for X Window. 
 
I think this is great for many reason. Yes, the command line with be with us for a long time, but even if it weren't this would still be relevant, even as a parenting tool.

It teaches children the concept that there are commands that load programs. To the modern child, you just click and something happens, but with the command line, you get a better feel for what that click really does. If they are interested later, they can be shown scripting to expand that knowledge. As they are introduced to the GUI, they can be shown how icons really only run the commands they have been typing. Even if they work a tech job, the lessons they learn about troubleshooting and critical thinking will be invaluable.

However, I like it for another reason. The father is getting his children interested in the things he does and building that relationship. It changes the mentality from "Daddy's doing his tech stuff again" to "Daddy's working on the command line, and I can learn that too!"
 
I remember the days of C:> and file names that were 8 characters plus 3. 

Remember how rarely those computers crashed? 
 
I agree with most of the posts here.  I'm a child of the 80's and owned an Amstrad CPC-464 so from the moment the machine was turned on, everything was command line based - fast forward thirty years and I laugh (well, mostly cry) when I watch people buy shareware to do a task which can be done in 30 seconds using the command line.  Lots of people don't use it, because they don't know it exists.
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