Now that computers are firmly in the hands of casual users, is there some way to teach them how to use the command line without throwing them head first into grep? Of course, anyone with the time and inclination (and someone to contact when they get stuck) can learn to use the shell. Also, of course, there’s an entire spectrum from those who would never touch a mouse to those who would never touch the keyboard if they could avoid it, so there must be room for shifting the bar to entry.
A modest suggestion is to, when possible, show users what is going on behind the scenes to give them an idea of how tools interact and work. Some software like TortoiseSVN, Emacs and Hugin already do this, but those are mostly expert level tools, and I guess rarely used by anyone reluctant to push the mouse into the farther recesses of the desk. Also, they show a ton of output with not much information about what to do to reproduce it. Since the user is not typing the commands herself, she won’t know which line in the output is the command and which are the output without a lot of work (or previous knowledge). So another very useful feature would be to emphasize the commands and tone down the output.
What else could be done?