Fun in the terminal

Sat 23 Feb 2019
Fri 1 Mar 2019

We all want to have a little fun at times. This is a collection of small jokes and programs that can crack you, your colleagues or family up.

I will keep updating this page when I find more of these fun programs. The ultimate goal is to create one of the most complete sources out there when it comes to these silly, geeky jokes people spread among us.

1. rev

Rev is a program that will reverse the words you put in this. Let's beat the system and make it a game!

To start, open a terminal and type rev. Every word you type next will be reverted. To exit use Ctrl + C.

rob@Rathalos ~ $ rev

Aha! When you revert meetsysteem you get meetsysteem!

2. cowsay / cowthink

Cows are capable of many more things people give them credit for. They can talk and think. You don't have to take my word for it though!

Simply install it with sudo apt-get install cowsay.

Then run cowsay/think + what you want the cow to do.

rob@Rathalos ~ $ cowsay Hi, my name is bob
< Hi, my name is bob >
        \   ^__^
         \  (oo)\_______
            (__)\       )\/\
                ||----w |
                ||     ||

rob@Rathalos ~ $ cowthink I want some icecream
( I want some icecream )
        o   ^__^
         o  (oo)\_______
            (__)\       )\/\
                ||----w |
                ||     ||

Cows are also featured in apt with apt-get moo! Try this one if you feel like your thirsty for some fresh cow's milk.

rob@Rathalos ~ $  apt-get moo
          / |    ||   
         *  /\---/\ 
            ~~   ~~   
..."Have you mooed today?"...

Or use fortune with it! If not already installed use sudo apt-get install fortune fortunes and then use fortune | cowsay.

rob@Rathalos ~ $ fortune | cowsay
/ And 1.1.81 is officially BugFree(tm), \
| so if you receive any bug-reports on  |
| it, you know they are just evil lies. |
|                                       |
\ -- Linus Torvalds                     /
        \   ^__^
         \  (oo)\_______
            (__)\       )\/\
                ||----w |
                ||     ||

Honorary Mentions

2.b xcowsay

xcowsay will render a graphical cow onto your screen and makes it talk. Install with sudo apt-get install xcowsay then simply use it like cowsay. Watch a cow tell a cowjoke.

rob@Rathalos ~ $ xcowsay "Why don’t cows have money? Because farmers milk them dry"

Fun in the Terminal - Cmatrix

3. pi

Pie, we all want to eat it. They virtually come in any thinkable flavor these days. You can have a digital slice of this pie by downloading it with sudo apt-get install pi.

Then simply run it in the terminal with the number of decimals that you want to see.

rob@Rathalos ~ $ pi 70

# Then I decided to add a decimal to the number of decimals I want to see
rob@Rathalos ~ $ pi 70.3

# Maby it is rounding down?
rob@Rathalos ~ $ pi 70.9
# ... funny that a program to calculate pi does not accept decimal input

# Another way to make some delish pi is with bc
rob@Rathalos ~ $ echo "scale=70; 4*a(1)" | bc -l

4. cmatrix

We all want to feel like a badass hacker. Cmatrix will make your wild dreams come true! I have written a short tutorial on how to become this hacker.

  1. Download and install with sudo apt-get install cmatrix
  2. Start the program with cmatrix
  3. Type random characters on your keyboard for the "coolness" effect

Especially for this program, due to its graphic nature, a screenshot just for you.

Fun in the Terminal - Cmatrix

4.b nmap

To add to the l33t skills try nmap like this nmap -oS -

rob@Rathalos ~ $ nmap -oS -

$tart1nG NmaP 7.60 ( htTPz://nMap.Org ) At 2019-02-26 08:13 C3T
NmAp $cAn R3p0rt f0R google.Com (
H0st Iz up (0.017z lat3ncy).
OtH3r adDre$$eS for g00gle.c0m (n0t scanned): 2a00:1450:400e:808::200E
rDNz rec0rD foR am$16S31-|
N0t $h0Wn: 998 f!lt3red pOrT$
PORT    $t4T3 S3RviCE
80/tcP  0P3n  Http
443/tcp 0p3n  httPs

Nmap d0n3: 1 !P aDdr3$S (1 H0$t Up) scaNned !n 4.59 $Ec0ndz

4.c cool-retro-term

This will make your set complete! You will code, crack, scan, hash and be plain awesome with this! Just like in the movies! Heck, the name of the programmer even hint's to a famous hacker movie!

Install - but always check these instructions as they do not run via official repositories! - with the following three commands or visit his github repo for alternative or more up-to-date instructions.

# Download the appimage
# Put the rights on their to execute
chmod a+x Cool-Retro-Term-1.1.1-x86_64.AppImage
# Enjoy!

Check out this cool terminal. You must try this one if you haven't.

Fun in the Terminal - Cool Retro Term

5. aafire

If you want to see your terminal world burn then this program is perfect, simple put aafire in your terminal. Fun fact, it is pre-installed on most Debian based distro's!

Fun in the Terminal - Aafire

6. espeak

Espeak allows you to turn text to speech. It's not perfect but dang good considering this software dates back to 1995! It has since been revised and completed to the version we know somewhere mid-2006, start-2007!

Simple install with sudo apt-get install espeak, then play around with the different voices!

For some reason male voice 5 did not work in my case.

# Male voices, opt for one of seven voices! (m1 - m7)
rob@Rathalos ~ $ espeak -v m2 "My name is bob, i'm a cow!"
# Female voices, opt for one of four voices! (f1 - f4)
rob@Rathalos ~ $ espeak -v f1 "Watch out! I'm a femme fatale!"

# Or with languages + some accents! like English-Nothern
rob@Rathalos ~ $ espeak -v en-n+f3 "Do you want some pi?"
# Or Dutch!
rob@Rathalos ~ $ espeak -v nl+m3 "Dit is de nederlandse stem"

This has been around for quite some time! Awesome to see it works so well.

7. Give your terminal an attitude

We don't like spineless weak terminals. Grow a spine and type your password RIGHT FOR ONCE! Add these insults/motivations for every time a login fails, just to motivate your users to correctly type in their passwords.

  1. sudo visudo
  2. Add Defaults insults under the defaults near the top
  3. sudo something
rob@Rathalos ~ $ sudo ls
[sudo] password for rob: 
Hold it up to the light --- not a brain in sight!
[sudo] password for rob: 
No soap, honkie-lips.
[sudo] password for rob: 
sudo: 3 incorrect password attempts

Some of those are really good haha.

7.b Give your terminal some color

If you feel your life in the terminal is like one monotone experience then lolcat might be something for you, install with sudo apt-get install lolcat. Just pipe content into this great command.

Let's try with a little fortune! fortune | lolcat. Due to it's graphic nature, a screenshot to show you the wonders!

Fun in the Terminal - LolCat