Regardless of which operating system you are using for this class (macOS or Linux), most of the work will be done inside a text terminal


A computer terminal is an electronic or electromechanical hardware device that is used for entering data into, and displaying or printing data from, a computer or a computing system. The teletype was an example of an early day hardcopy terminal, and predated the use of a computer screen by decades.

Early terminals were inexpensive devices but very slow compared to punched cards or paper tape for input, but as the technology improved and video displays were introduced, terminals pushed these older forms of interaction from the industry.


Every distribution of linux has a terminal. The easiest way to open one is with CtrlAltT.


Likewise, all macOS distributions have Terminal.app. It is found under /Applications/Utilities/Terminal.app, but you can also search for it using Spotlight with Space and just typing "terminal".


Take a look at the Linux Journey chapter on The Shell, but here are some common commands:

Task Command
List Directory ls or ls dir
Change Directory cd dir
Make a New Directory mkdir new
View the Manual for a Command man ls