Contents page

Index (83KB)


plumbing: [UNIX] n. Term used for shell code, so called
   because of the prevalence of `pipelines' that feed the output of
   one program to the input of another.  Under UNIX, user utilities
   can often be implemented or at least prototyped by a suitable
   collection of pipelines and temp-file grinding encapsulated in a
   shell script; this is much less effort than writing C every time,
   and the capability is considered one of UNIX's major winning
   features.  A few other OSs such as IBM's VM/CMS support similar
   facilities.  Esp. used in the construction `hairy plumbing'
   (see hairy).  "You can kluge together a basic spell-checker
   out of `sort(1)', `comm(1)', and `tr(1)' with a
   little plumbing."  See also tee.