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Searching Wikipedia on the Linux command line with wikit


Have you ever imagined looking up some topic on Wikipedia while you’re working on the Linux command line? What about displaying the results in a different language? Yes, it’s possible. In fact, it’s quite easy. The tool that provides this service is called wikit (Wikipedia IT).

To check if wikit is installed on your system, just type “which wikit”. If it is, you will get a response like this:

$ which wikit
/usr/local/bin/wikit

If it’s not, you can install it, but you might need to first install nodejs which wikit depends on and maybe npm as well with a command like one of these:

$ sudo apt install nodejs npm	# Debian/Ubuntu
$ sudo yum install nodejs npm	# RHEL/CentOS
$ sudo dnf install nodejs npm	# Fedora

Install wikit using a command like this:

$ sudo npm install wikit -g

To try wikit out, type “wikit” followed by the topic that you’re interested in. For example:

$ wikit IDG
 International Data Group, Inc. (IDG) is a Massachusetts registered and
 headquartered media, events and research company focused on the tech
 landscape. Founded in 1964, it is made up of International Data Corporation
 (IDC) and IDG Communications; the latter includes the brands CIO magazine,
 Computerworld, CSO, InfoWorld, JavaWorld, Macworld, NetworkWorld, PCWorld,
 and TechHive. IDG was bought by China Oceanwide in 2017 while maintaining
 U.S. based leadership.

Some of the Wikipedia content is available in multiple languages. To get the response to the command shown above in French, for example, you could do this:

Copyright © 2020 IDG Communications, Inc.

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