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Re: Work practices: log books, notes files...

by almut (Canon)
on Apr 17, 2008 at 00:18 UTC ( #680961=note: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to Work practices: log books, notes files...

Nothing spectacular... but I've gotten into the habit of storing away my current shells' command histories whenever I feel I've done something non-trivial (debugging/compile session, etc.). For that I have a little script which essentially does history >~/memos/YYYY-MM-DD_hh-mm-ss.hist (YYYY-... being the current timestamp). Occasionally, I clean them up a little, or add a few short notes, but more often I don't.

I can then easily grep through those files whenever I can no longer remember what I did when and how...  Also, I can cut-n-paste stuff (can you remember all the hostnames and portnumbers you typed two months ago when you had set up that three-hop SSH tunnel to some client? — well, I can't). The possibility of chronological access (kind of like a 'diary') has sometimes turned out useful too, to reconstruct things — when someone asked or came up with strange claims...

All in all, this has proven very useful, considering that it takes almost no extra effort once you've made it a habit... (which is important for the generally lazy chick that I am :)


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Re^2: Work practices: log books, notes files...
by parv (Priest) on Apr 17, 2008 at 03:04 UTC

    My zshrc has ...

    date=$( date +'%Y%m%d' ) # HOSTNAME is assigned, well, host name elsewhere. HISTFILE="${HOME}/log/sh/zhist.${date}.${HOSTNAME}" SAVEHIST=9000 HISTSIZE=9500
preserving shell command histories (was Re^2: Work practices: log books, notes files...)
by doom (Deacon) on Apr 17, 2008 at 05:15 UTC

    I've gotten into the habit of storing away my current shells' command histories whenever I feel I've done something non-trivial (debugging/compile session, etc.).

    You could script that and run it from a nightly cron job, so you'd have a library of shell command histories to refer back to, irrespective of whether you thought you were doing something important at the time...

      I'm sure I could, but I prefer to have it filtered through some conscious, deliberate selection process — not everything I type in any shell I open is worth being preserved... and storing everything would likely only reduce the signal-to-noise ratio. Also, the semi-automatic approach encourages me to add notes or keywords, which tend to improve the overall usefulness of the history files (you know, when you're lazy, you have to devise ways to trick yourself into doing things you otherwise wouldn't do...:)  And honestly, spending one or two seconds when you've finished something (or before you close a shell) to decide whether it's worth being preserved, is not too much of an issue for me. But, as always, YMMV.

      Actually, the tools I use to 'manage' my history files are slightly more flexible than what I mentioned above (I can specify how many most recent entries to save, whether to create a new file or append it to some other, whether to open it up in my editor, or filter out common trivialities, etc.), but I didn't want to bore you with the details...

      BTW, other than that, I'm pretty old-fashioned in that I very much like paper and pencil to sketch design diagrams or write down temporary todo lists, etc. For one, it just feels better to be able to physically cross out completed items, rather than simply deleting the respective entries in an electronic version (yes, you guessed it, I'm a little weird at times :)

        Actually, the tools I use to 'manage' my history files are slightly more flexible than what I mentioned above ... but I didn't want to bore you with the details...

        You're not paying attention to your audience.

        I'm a little weird at times :)

        Like I said.

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