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Take Control of the Mac Command Line with Terminal, 2nd Edition by Joe Kissell

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Understand Basic Command-Line Concepts

In order to make sense of what you read about the command line, you should know a bit of background material. This chapter explains the ideas and terminology I use throughout the book, providing context for everything I discuss later in the book.

What’s Unix?

Unix is a computer operating system with roots going back to 1969. Back then, Unix referred to one specific operating system running on certain expensive minicomputers (which weren’t “mini” at all; they were enormous!). Over time, quite a few companies, educational institutions, and other groups have developed their own variants of Unix—some were offshoots from the original version and others were built from scratch.

After many branches, splits, mergers, ...

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