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Re: Feature request: Enable possibility of colored stderr output

From: A M
Subject: Re: Feature request: Enable possibility of colored stderr output
Date: Tue, 15 Sep 2020 07:09:51 +0200
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/68.11.0

Hello. Thanks everyone for explaining that Bash can't have effect on other processes stderr.

Chet, yes I certainly think it would be a good feature enabling more colorization in Bash's own output. About the other types of information you pointed out I think that's a good idea to consider them too.

Just to be clear: I am not giving any opinion on whether this feature should be enabled by default or not, just that the possibility exist for the user to choose to use or not.

As I briefly mentioned in my first email, using colorization to differentiate different types of messages could improve readability of the terminal and be helpful for the user. I hope it seems fairly apparent to most people that if you have a body of text, if certain parts of the text, like errors and warnings, are in a different color than the "normal" text, that would result in the text being more readable as opposed to if all the text were just in a single color and no other methods were used to distinguish.

I have not researched the topic more in depth but I think it would be easy to do some searching online and finding various results, like studies on methods for improving the presentation of information.

Here is just something I found by a quick search:
"This research finds that color coding has an important effect on improving information acquisition and memory. People have a limited capacity for processing information and visual stimuli. Color helps us categorize the instructional stimuli we are presented with."

Best Regards

On 9/14/20 3:52 PM, Chet Ramey wrote:
On 9/13/20 5:59 AM, A M wrote:
Hello, I would like to submit a feature request/suggestion on Bash. (I was
told submitting to this mailing list was the right way to do it.)

Feature request: Enable possibility of colored stderr output.
Let's separate the two cases: bash coloring its own output to stderr, which
is usually warnings and errors, and output to stderr by processes bash runs.

We can discard the latter case right away -- bash doesn't, and shouldn't,
have any effect on another process's stderr other than redirecting it.
That's something that should be left to the other process. If you really
want it, you can do things outside of bash itself to achieve it.

The first case is different: would there be any advantage to having bash
color its own error messages? And how about other information that gets
printed to stderr, like warnings or job status messages?

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