If you've been using email for any length of time, you've undoubtedly noticed signature files, which appear at the bottom of messages and include contact information, company name, and perhaps a short funny quote or saying. You can add a signature to your outgoing messages by creating a .signature file (Figure 11.13).
Figure 11.13. Your signature file can contain any information you want. Be creative, but keep it concise!
To create a signature file:
At the shell prompt, type an editor's name (here we use pico, but you can use the editor of your choice), specify the home directory (with ~/), and then specify the .signature filename. Note the leading dot in the filename, which makes the file hidden.
Eric J. Ray firstname.lastname@example.org My thoughts are my own ... is that OK, honey?
Go ahead, type your signature information (Figure 11.13). We recommend that your .signature file include, at minimum, your name and email address. You can also add funny sayings ("You know you're a geek when you refer to going to the bathroom as 'downloading.'") or disclaimers ("My opinions are mine and not my company's."). Whatever you want, really. Keep your signature as short as possible; long signatures are hard to wade through.
Save and exit the file.
If you're using pico or vi, you can get a quick reminder about this in Chapter 4.
If you want to get really fancy with your signature, use a figlet, which is a text representation of letters, as shown in Code Listing 11.5. Check out www.yahoo.com or your favorite Internet search engine and search for "figlet" or "figlet generator" for more information about creating your own.
Many email purists think that four lines is the longest signature anyone should have. If you create one that's longer, expect some people to chew you out for it.
Both mutt and pine automatically include a .signature file in outgoing mail.
Code Listing 11.5. Figlets are fun and fancy.
[ejr@hobbes ejr]$ more figlet _____ _____ _____ | __ \ / ____| |_ _| | |__) |__ _ _ _| | ___ _ __ ___ _ __ ___ | | _ __ ___ | _ // _' | | | | | / _ \| '_ ' \| '_ ' _ \ | | | '_\ / ___| | | \ \ (_| | |_| | |___| (_) | | | | | | | | | | |_ _| |_| | | | (__ _ |_| \_\__,_|\__, |\_____\___/|_| |_| |_|_| |_| |_( ) |_____|_| |_|\___(_) __/ | |/ |___/