Running Alpine in Function Key Mode

By now I assume you’ve experimented with Alpine, as a character-based email client. Well, I have another tip for you.

I have been using alpine almost exclusively for a few weeks now. I switch to Evolution now and then because it is easier to gather groups of emails and move them to storage folders, etc. in a fully GUI program, but for the most part, if you have been communicating with me via email at all over the last few weeks, you have to imagine me on this end looking at a terminal window, using a character based program, mouse-free, typing rather than clicking.

I’ve provided a few technical tips and tricks for alpine, and here’s another one. In Linux, if you startup alpine like this:

alpine -k

you get the function key version. This replaces the control keys with function keys, and the help system reflects this change very nicely. I’m going to consider using it on my desktop in the Blog Cave, because that has an Avant Stellar keyboard with a set of function keys on the left side. I’m currently using these keys for something else (well, some of them) but I can play around with the old wordperfect model of having a truly extended almost-touch typing keyboard and see how that goes.

Comments

  1. #1 davem
    October 22, 2009

    “By now I assume you’ve experimented with Alpine”

    If I had an ancient 8086 with 64K of memory and a 4800 bps modem, I’d use Alpine too. :0)

  2. #2 Greg Laden
    October 22, 2009

    davem: Exactly! And it would work as well as any other email client. So, if you’ve got the extra computing power why waste it, in case something demanding and important comes along!

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