Text Is the Universal Interface and the Unix Philosophy

The language model works with text. The language model remains the best interface I’ve ever used. It’s user-friendly, composable, and available everywhere. It’s easy to automate and easy to extend.

A text stream program comes with automatic ease of collaboration and organization: individuals can change the internals of different programs without worrying about breaking the work of others. After all, the interface is standard. Text stream programs also come with extensibility built in for free. When the rudimentary data format of I/O never changes, you can string together long sequences of nested shell invocations to build ornate software cathedrals just by wiring simple programs together that modify each other’s behavior. Text became the most common lever by which mankind would work computers to do their bidding.