This book is written using Texinfo, the GNU documentation formatting language. A single Texinfo source file is used to produce both the printed and on-line versions of the documentation. Because of this, the typographical conventions are slightly different than in other books you may have read.
Examples you would type at the command line are preceded by the common shell primary and secondary prompts, `$' and `>'. Output from the command is preceded by the glyph "-|". This typically represents the command's standard output. Error messages, and other output on the command's standard error, are preceded by the glyph "error-->". For example:
$ echo hi on stdout -| hi on stdout $ echo hello on stderr 1>&2 error--> hello on stderr
In the text, command names appear in
this font, while code segments
appear in the same font and quoted, `like this'. Some things will
be emphasized like this, and if a point needs to be made
strongly, it will be done like this. The first occurrence of
a new term is usually its definition, and appears in the same
font as the previous occurrence of "definition" in this sentence.
File names are indicated like this: `/path/to/ourfile'.
Characters that you type at the keyboard look like this. In particular, there are special characters called "control characters." These are characters that you type by holding down both the CONTROL key and another key, at the same time. For example, a Control-d is typed by first pressing and holding the CONTROL key, next pressing the d key, and finally releasing both keys.
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