I recently came into possession of an ancient O’Reilly book on the utilities sed and awk, tools that I use occasionally at work but have really only scratched the surface of. There’s a passage right at the start that chimed with me, and here it is as a command line call:

$ echo ‘Initially, using sed and awk will seem like the long way to accomplish a task. After several attempts you may conclude that the task would have been easier to do manually. Be patient. You not only have to learn how to use sed and awk but you also need to learn to recognize situations where using them pays off. As you become more proficient, you will solve problems more quickly and solve a broader range of problems.

You will also begin to see opportunities to find general solutions to specific problems. There is a way of looking a a problem so you see it related to a class of problems. Then you can devise a solution that can be reused in other situations.’ | sed ‘s/sed and awk/new tools/g’

Image: O’Reilly
Thanks: Sarah for the book.