highest is a program that efficiently finds the n highest (or lowest) numbers in a list of numbers on stdin. The traditional way of computing this using GNU sort should have a running time of O(n log n), where n is the number of numbers to check. Highest should have a running time of O(n log m), where m is the number of numbers you want to keep. A graph comparing the performance of highest to that of GNU sort is provided.
gprog is a basic GUI pipe meter that shows the percentage complete as data moves through a Unix pipe. It is very fast because it uses a dual process design with a cache oblivious algorithm for self-tuning. Also, the presentation is largely decoupled from the transfer, so that the GUI won't slow down the transfer.