I am sometimes surprised that I haven’t seen many text-based drawing tools in the past year and a half.
My interest in those would go back to the days of the Commodore 64 though, when character-driven graphics were a more popular way of working with colors and shapes. More popular than it is now, I guess. 😦
Mix textdraw into that equation, and you have a suite of tools that should meet most of your requirements to become the next Caravaggio of the console.
Linux Mint inherits that from the Debian archives, but my efforts to build textdraw in Arch ran up against some compiler errors that I wasn’t prepared to resolve. If you’re willing to commit a cross-distro sin, steal the .deb package for your architecture from the Debian package search, and strip out the
td binary with deb2targz. It works fine.
The nice thing about textdraw, and the point that cadubi, figlet and just about everything else seem to miss, are tools specific to lines and shapes. textdraw can implant circles, rectangles and lines into your document, as well as text in four different directions.
Even better, textdraw can also copy, move, delete and paste those shapes, by issuing the appropriate command after parking the cursor on the upper-leftmost corner of the object. That can be a little tricky to find on some shapes, but with a little practice, you can master it.
There are also options to save your masterpiece and to “print” it to an ASCII text file. Just quitting will send your magnum opus into the digital netherworld.
Like I suggested, textdraw is in Debian, but not in Arch/AUR, and the source code available from Debian couldn’t build on my machine.
The home page is lost to me, and the few links I had for it are either to unrelated Windows programs, or are to software archives that don’t have a home page either. That’s a shame. Edit: John found a working link, here.
So … running down the list, we have:
- The caca libraries, which can convert from standard image files to colorized text renditions;
- figlet (and others), which can translate plain text into line-drawn letters;
- cadubi, which allows access to a wider range of characters and colors, applied stamp-pad style;
- and now textdraw, which can render lines and shapes, cut and paste them, move them, delete them, and apply some basic text effects.
What else could you need, Michelangelo? 😉
For making a worthy contribution to the console landscape, and doing so with a considerable amount of panache, textdraw gets a coveted K.Mandla gold star from me: ⭐ Enjoy! 😀