Frequently, I need to leave myself a reminder or send myself a note on another Mac. I used to do this via email, but now mostly use ssh, with the open and bbedit commands. Since I use ssh private keys for authentication, this is very convenient -- I can issue commands to remote machines without having to enter a password each time.

Since I ssh so often, I've set up several convenience aliases, including ss for "ssh salt" and sc for "ssh cayenne".

For several years I wished for remote clipboard support; I believe Peter Lewis even wrote a tool to implement it, and there are remote control tools such as VNC, but this is simpler and quicker.


Here are some examples of useful remote commands:

Open a BBEdit window on salt, showing the entered serial number:

echo "Serial Number for Some Super Software" | ss bbedit

Open an article in Safari, on cayenne:

sc open http://db.tidbits.com/article/8835

Open a couple pages in Safari on cayenne, including one with punctuation in the URL that would normally trip up the shell:

sc 'open http://blogs.zdnet.com/threatchaos/?p=311 http://daringfireball.net/2007/02/more_crap_from_enderle'

I keep most of my systems on all the time, so it's extremely handy to be able to toss text and URLs around this way.

Serious UNIX nerds can use cat to send a block of text over (Control-D at the end terminates text entry and bundles off the text):

cat - | ss bbedit
This is a test.
This is only a test.
If this was a real emergency, you'd be dead already.
^D

Alternatively, create a text file via a normal ssh session, and open it for later -- this is not as fast, but conceptually closer to normal usage:

pepper@www:~$ ss
Last login: Thu Feb  8 18:13:36 2007 from www.reppep.com
Welcome to Darwin!
pepper@salt:~$ vi Desktop/note.txt
[Type, paste, whatever, here; then save and exit vi]
pepper@salt:~$ bbedit Desktop/note.txt
pepper@salt:~$ logout
Connection to salt.rockefeller.edu closed.
pepper@www:~$ 

Additionally, I do something similar to remind myself to edit or update documents when I get home, which looks something like this:

sc bbedit www/pepper/public_html/index.html