I stumbled upon an article (https://danluu.com/cli-complexity/), that explores the dramatic growth of the number of command line options in most popular Unix commands between 1979 and 2017 and explains why it may have happened. I found it very interesting and instructive to read.
I am personally a big fan of “do one thing and do it well” phylosophy, but I concur that it does not always work. E.g. I am really grateful for
grep -r for recursive “find in files” option, so I don’t have to write something like
find . -type f | xargs grep.
I was also unpleasantly surprised by behavior of
git blame mentioned in the article: it turns out that
git blame -C -C means “dig deeper in history than
git blame -C, and
git blame -C -C -C means “dig even deeper”. This is not how options usually work in Unix, I would expect something like
git blame -C 2 or
git blame -C --deep.
The link to the original research is broken.
Thank you! Fixed.