Automating your routine with Golang and a CLI

I had this idea after reading the article of Chris Bongers about automating morning routine

I read that article and loved the idea to automate some tasks that we do everyday.

So i decided to take a step further and create a CLI who is gonna be my "assistant" to make all kind of small tasks.

In this tutorial, we are going to make a CLI in Golang to do two things :

  • Open tabs on my browser (like Chris Bongers did with a script but we are gonna do it with Golang)
  • Create and saves txt notes from the CLI.


You must have a little knowledge about Golang to follow this tutorial.

To create the CLI, we are going to use Cobra

Cobra is a library for creating CLI in golang.

Create the project

Now we can start.

We are going to create a new project on our computer

mkdir mycli
cd mycli
go mod init mycli
go get -u

init the CLI

Now that we have cobra installed, we can start creating our cli

The pkg-name here is important because it's going to be the name you invoke when calling your CLI. I'm gonna call mine Homer

cobra init --pkg-name homer

After executing that command , you can see that your project-folder looks like this

▾ mycli/
  ▾ cmd/

Create our first command

Now let's add our first command to our cli

cobra add <commandName>

Our first command is to open tabs in the morning, so i am gonna type

cobra add morning

If you look at your files structure, a new file called morning.go has been created. Every time you are gonna add a command, a new file with the name of your command is gonna be created in the cmd folder.

▾ mycli/
  ▾ cmd/

Implement the morning command

Now, open the file called morning.go

package cmd

import (


// morningCmd represents the morning command
var morningCmd = &cobra.Command{
    Use:   "morning",
    Short: "A brief description of your command",
    Long: `A longer description that spans multiple lines and likely contains examples
and usage of using your command. For example:

Cobra is a CLI library for Go that empowers applications.
This application is a tool to generate the needed files
to quickly create a Cobra application.`,
    Run: func(cmd *cobra.Command, args []string) {
        fmt.Println("morning called")

func init() {

    // Here you will define your flags and configuration settings.

    // Cobra supports Persistent Flags which will work for this command
    // and all subcommands, e.g.:
    // morningCmd.PersistentFlags().String("foo", "", "A help for foo")

    // Cobra supports local flags which will only run when this command
    // is called directly, e.g.:
    // morningCmd.Flags().BoolP("toggle", "t", false, "Help message for toggle")

We are going to work inside the var morningCmd that represents our command.

First, complete the use and the descriptions (long and short) of your command.

Then, inside the Run , we are going to implement the actual code that we want to run when we are going to call the command : homer morning

package cmd

import (


// morningCmd represents the morning command
var morningCmd = &cobra.Command{
    Use:   "morning",
    Short: "Open a list of urls",
    Long: `Url opens a list of urls defined in a txt file`,
    Run: func(cmd *cobra.Command, args []string) {
        fmt.Println("Good morning ! Homer is opening your tabs")
        // Open the file.
        f, _ := os.Open("/path/to/your/tabs.txt")
        // Create a new Scanner for the file.
        scanner := bufio.NewScanner(f)
        // Loop over all lines in the file and print them.
        for scanner.Scan() {
          line := scanner.Text()
          // use browser to Open the url

Great ! Now let's build our app

go install homer

And try our command

homer morning
Good morning ! Homer is opening your tabs

Tadaaaaaam !

Let's add another command

Well, now let's go further and add another command.

Let's add a command to take quick notes.

cobra add notes

A new file called notes.go is now available.

Let's implement the code

package cmd

import (


// notesCmd represents the notes command
var notesCmd = &cobra.Command{
    Use:   "notes",
    Short: "A command to take quick notes",
    Long: `This command helps you take quick notes by opening a file .txt`,
    Run: func(cmd *cobra.Command, args []string) {
        fmt.Println("Homer is opening a new note")
        // create a folder for the notes if doesn't exists
        _ = os.Mkdir("./notes", 0755)
        // open the editor of your choice => nano for me
        // the name of the file will be your argument
        // homer notes myfile will open a file called myfile.txt 
        editorCmd := exec.Command("nano", fmt.Sprintf("./notes/%v.txt", args[0]))
        editorCmd.Stdin = os.Stdin
        editorCmd.Stdout = os.Stdout
        editorCmd.Stderr = os.Stderr

        err := editorCmd.Run()
        if (err != nil) {

func init() {

Now, build the app : go install homer

And run the command

homer notes mynote

Capture d'écran 2020-11-29 13:21:46.png

Just write your note and save it.

All your notes will be saved inside the folder notes.
I chose to put it inside the project (./notes) but you can choose to create it wherever you want on your computer.

And now ?

Now you have a new assistant called homer that can do multiple tasks for you.
So just think about a new task you want to automate, and make a new command with cobra.

For example, you can add subcommands to list all your notes, to find a particular note, to delete a note ...

Have fun with your new assistant :)

Comments (1)

Chris Bongers's photo

This is amazing! Automation for the win, especially if it makes everyday tasks easier.