Read Wikipedia from the command line

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© Lead Image © Vasiliy Yakobchuk,

© Lead Image © Vasiliy Yakobchuk,

Article from Issue 226/2019

Save time and mouse clicks by using wikit to search and read Wikipedia entries at the command line.

If, like me, you are a big fan of the command line, you'll be happy to hear about any script that keeps your hands on the keyboard while keeping you out of a web browser. This is how I felt when I discovered wikit [1].

Accessing and searching Wikipedia is part of everyday life just like coffee with breakfast. However, I rarely read entire articles. Instead, it's more about getting a quick introduction to a topic or retrieving a few facts. wikit does this by displaying a summary of various Wikipedia articles at the command line. The summary includes the portion of a Wikipedia page that precedes the table of contents.

wikit includes a few options, which are quickly memorized, making deployment easy. One option lets you call articles in different languages; another option lets you call the complete article in either a GUI or text-based web browser. In addition to specifying the desired language when calling up an article, you can also set a fixed language or influence the line length.


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