Terminal Image Viewer

Terminal Image Viewer – display images in a terminal

Last Updated on August 11, 2021

One of our favorite adages is “A picture is worth a thousand words”. It refers to the notion that a still image can convey a complex idea. Images can portray a lot of information quickly and more efficiently than text. They capture memories, and never let you forget something you want to remember, and refresh it in your memory.

Images are part of every day internet usage, and are particularly important for social media engagement. A good image viewer is an essential part of any operating system.

Terminal Image Viewer is different from the majority of image viewers. It’s a tiny C++ program (under 650 lines of code) that displays images in a terminal by outputting RGB ANSI codes and Unicode block graphic characters.


It’s trivial to compile the program.

You’ll need ImageMagick installed. Next clone the project’s GitHub repository, change into the correct directory, and compile the source file.

$ git clone https://github.com/stefanhaustein/TerminalImageViewer.git
$ cd TerminalImageViewer/src/main/cpp
$ make
$ sudo make install

For Arch-based distributions, there’s a package in the Arch User Repository, but, at the time of writing, it didn’t build the program.

Next page: Page 2 – In Operation / Summary

Pages in this article:
Page 1 – Introduction / Installation
Page 2 – In Operation / Summary

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