Communicating with Other Users Using talk
You can also have a real-time, two-way conversation (very much like an instant-messaging chat) with another user logged in to the system by using talk. As Figure 12.5 shows, you type your messages, the other person types his, and you can both see the exchanges onscreen.
Figure 12.5. talk lets you have a real-time, two-way online conversation.
To Communicate with Other Users Using talk:
At the shell prompt, type talk and the userid of the person to whom you want to talk. The other user will be prompted to enter talk and your userid. Then, you'll see the talk screen, as shown in Figure 12.5.
You just wouldn't have believed it! I had just chased the dog for six blocks...Yeah, the stinkin' pooch always thinks the garbage truck is stealing our stuff... Right. Hilarious. Anyway, there I was huffing and puffing on the front porch, when a neighbor informed me that some kids were rooting through my trash. Like, what did they expect to find? Old panty hose and coffee filters? Nawww. I stopped using panty hose for coffee filters a long time ago. It made me look too tan.
Type anything you want. Each keystroke will show up on the other person's screen, so they'll see exactly how quickly (and how well) you type.
When you're finished, break the connection.
You can also talk to people logged in to other Unix systems. Just use talk firstname.lastname@example.org. Of course, fill in the other person's actual userid and address, which will often be the same as that person's email address. Firewalls oftenbut not alwaysblock these chats, though.
If someone requests a talk with you, just type talk and the person's userid (or email@example.com, if the person's host name isn't the same as yours).
As with write, you can type mesg n and mesg y at the shell prompt to turn talk off and on for the current session.
Though talk is not as groovy as some of the GUI-based instant messaging programs, it's still pretty cool, huh? It's also a good way to ask for help from more experienced users on your system.