"reports" - not just an a buzzy HR expression
By Paul Murphy, author of The Unix Guide to Defenestration
You've probably met my friend Timmy. He has a job as a data center technical manager but he's really just a report collector - and nothing will save you from his anger if your time sheet is 15 minutes late or somehow incomplete.
It's been my experience that the more out of his shallow Timmy gets, the more he wants to focus on my shortcomings as a writer of time and activity reports.
So I use a simple alias to keep a record of what I do:
alias addt 'echo \!* " "`date` >>/usr/murph/timmy/jobs.list '
When I enter:
% addt off to meeting on improving oracle perf - with Jack and dave rm 410 id=801b
the jobs list file gets a new line:
off to meeting on improving oracle perf - with Jack and dave rm 410 id=801b Wed Apr 16 19:18:47 EDT 2003
When I get back, I record the start of the next job the same way.
Come Friday afternoon, a little manual editing gets the file ready for processing by timmy.pl. This turns my time notes for the week into a summary report by project id and creates a comma delimited listing showing activity in each 15 minute interval. That file gets loaded into scalc and written out as an XLS for Timmy - who should quietly rejoice in the detail provided but, in reality, usually complains about my spelling.