When I was thinking about building this website, I took a side trip and made a new mysql client, based upon psh (Perl Shell).
Here is the source code, hosted at code.google.com:
The default MySQL client is nice, but I wanted to add some features to it, like command aliases. I also wanted to be able to be in my normal shell and quickly grab stuff from a MySQL table without switching terminals. So, I wrote a couple extensions to the psh (Perl Shell).
Two new commands are "dls" and "dhead". Screenshots below
The command "dls" lists all the tables in the current database, but feels like a "ls -ltr" in that it sorts them by last-modified time and shows the sizes:
The command "dhead" just peeks at the top 10 records of a table, and it compresses long fields when possible so that it can try to fit on a page:
This is an alpha version but I use it quite a bit.