Not that long ago I was fidling around with my Xdebug settings and discovered by accident that you can enable a nice color formatted var_dump by changing just one small setting. It improves readability a lot and also color highlights errors which obviously comes in very handy when debugging code.

After I recently found out that a newer version of nano than the one that ships by default with OS X can be upgraded to a version that supports syntax highlighting, I started to be annoyed by the fact that cat didn't supported syntax highlighting.

So I did a little bit of research. Turns out that with a little bit of effort and a small workaround, we can bring it to cat as well.

Recently I was editing a php file on my VPS and I noticed it had some basic highlighting. The reason why I noticed is because on Mac OS X everything is always in the default terminal color without highlighting.

So I Googled a bit until I came accross some lost gist with a few comments of people trying to enable it. After trying it myself and using it for a day or two I wouldn't want to live without it anymore. It's a very handy little tweak that will definitely boost your productivity as a developer.