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pipe html to a browser
#!/bin/sh -e
# Usage: browser
# pipe html to a browser
# e.g.
# $ echo '<h1>hi mom!</h1>' | browser
# $ ron -5 man/rip.5.ron | browser
if [ -t 0 ]; then
if [ -n "$1" ]; then
open $1
cat <<usage
Usage: browser
pipe html to a browser
$ echo '<h1>hi mom!</h1>' | browser
$ ron -5 man/rip.5.ron | browser
cat /dev/stdin > $f
open $f


brew install browser

Or, if you must:

 sudo curl -o /usr/local/bin/browser
 sudo chmod +x /usr/local/bin/browser
jocap commented Nov 10, 2010

Just in case anyone can't figure this out:
TextMate command:
cat $TM_FILE | /usr/local/bin/browser

rleber commented Dec 11, 2010

Small point, but "...hi mom!..." should be '...hi mom!...' in the usage example in the comments. Strong quoting is needed to avoid the dreaded "bash: !: event not found" error.


/Users/humza/homebrew/bin/browser: line 2: syntax error near unexpected token '<'
'Users/humza/homebrew/bin/browser: line 2: '<title>301 Moved Permanently</title>' I get this for some reason


The URL for installation should be https:

sudo curl -o /usr/local/bin/browser
sudo chmod +x /usr/local/bin/browser
ghost commented May 31, 2011

or with zsh, it is
open =(echo '<h1>zsh rulez!</h1>')

=(foo) takes the output of foo, writes it into a file in /tmp and returns the files path.

Ps0ke commented May 29, 2013

In bash you can do <(foo) to achieve the same as zsh's =(foo). But it doesn't work with the open(1) utility for me. How should it figure out the file type anyway?

Zeokat commented Mar 9, 2014

Zeokat usefull piece of code.



:; I="$(basename $0)"; [ -z $BROWSER ] && open=open || open=$BROWSER

[ $# -eq 0 ] && set -- -; [ "$1" = "-" ] && [ -t 0 ] &&
  echo "Usage: [ COMMAND | $I ] | [ $I < FILE ] | [ $I FILE ... ]" >&2 && exit

for what; do where="/tmp/$(od -N2 < /dev/urandom | openssl dgst -sha1).html"
  cat "$what" > "$where" && $open "$where"; sleep 1 && rm -f "$where" & done

Some advantages:

  • Respect $BROWSER. Can be BROWSER=lynx, BROWSER='open -a Firefox', etc.
  • No bashisms ($RANDOM) or zsh-isms (=(...)).
  • Correctly handles arguments that do not end in .html.
  • Correctly handles multiple arguments and shell globs.
  • Cleans up after itself.
  • Doesn't even need a shebang!

Or, you might prefer what I use: avoid leaving your terminal at all, and:

cat "$what" > "$where" && qlmanage -p "$where" >/dev/null 2>&1; sleep 1 ...

To show Markdown files in browsers, I found a way without temporary files:

It uses data: URIs for fun and profit:

x-www-browser $(base64 -w0 | cat <(echo -n 'data:text/html;base64,') -)
#  ^--- Debian link to default browser
#               ^---- base64 slurps stdin as default
#                            ^--- concat the "data:" header, then the content
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