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State of the Onion 9

CowboyNeal posted more than 8 years ago | from the straight-from-the-camel's-mouth dept.

Perl 174

chromatic writes "Perl.com has just published Larry Wall's Ninth Annual State of the Onion address from OSCON 2005. In previous talks, he's used screensavers, music, and Unicode to explore Perl and open source. This year, he introduced the cast of characters in the Perl community in terms of spy movies and metaphors."

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Do people still use perl? (-1, Troll)

0xdeaddead (797696) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626017)

I mean, what about ruby!???

CHUNKY Bacon!

Re:Do people still use perl? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626386)

How is this a troll really? Lots of folks *have* picked up Ruby in the time that Perl6 has been in development.
I still use perl all the time but it's fun to try new (to me) stuff like Ruby or Scheme - playful jabs are not the same as trolling.

The Chunky Bacon bit? It's a reference to Why's (Poignant) Guide to Ruby [poignantguide.net] a funny, illustrated introduction to the language.

Kevin

Google... (1, Troll)

Saeed al-Sahaf (665390) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626525)

How is it a troll? I'll tell you how: Slashdot has moved on from Ruby on Rails and is now in prepetual masturbation mode over all things Google. Haven't you noticed?

And every year (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626024)

I'm disapointed it has nothing to do with The Onion - the satirical news site.

Re:And every year (0, Offtopic)

Vombatus (777631) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626186)

Well, it made me cry

Re:And every year (0, Troll)

James Dale Guckert (868708) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626224)

Shut the fuck up before I shove my enormous, knotted cock down your throat past your open flapping gums. Your shit nerd jokes are about as funny as a roto rooter up the ass, and while I'm sure that gets you all horny, I don't really think it's anything I'd enjoy.

Re:And every year (1)

Tatarize (682683) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626300)

Yeah, because somebody has to talk about the state of theOnion. Other than that great page from the future it's been pretty rote lately. Here I was hoping somebody had noticed and was talking about it's current abysmal state. It use to be the funniest site on the net.

Re:And every year (0)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626499)

It use to be the funniest site on the net.

That's ok, we have /. instead.

Re:And every year (1)

zoogies (879569) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626653)

As someone who has never heard of the State of the Onion address before this, I am SEVERELY disappointed. It was, "YES! They have STATE OF THE ONION ADDRESSES? ZOMG AWESOME!" And then. Perl? WTF x_x

Re:And every year (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626697)

> I'm disapointed it has nothing to do with The Onion -
> the satirical news site.

Here's a link to an article the did a while back. Made
me laugh...

'White History Year Resumes'

http://www.theonion.com/content/node/27933 [theonion.com]

Any Relation to the News Site? (-1, Redundant)

CodeBuster (516420) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626025)

Is Larry Wall associated with The Onion [theonion.com] ?

Maybe perl is a bad joke.... (0, Offtopic)

0xdeaddead (797696) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626035)

so here comes the punchline!

Re:Maybe perl is a bad joke.... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626107)

so here comes the punchline!

WHACK! Anonymous Coward slaps Oxodeaddead [slashdot.org] around the head a bit with a large Perl book! There that will teach you to insult Perl you farty pants VB coder!

Re:Maybe perl is a bad joke.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626552)

I'm guessing that's what the doctor's said when you were delivered.

Re:Any Relation to the News Site? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626052)

Any more onion jokes like that and I'll cry....

Re:Any Relation to the News Site? (1)

PunkOfLinux (870955) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626086)

That was SO bad...

Perl blows camels. (-1, Troll)

picz plz (915164) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626057)

PERL stands for Use Another Language, in Russian. 'Nuf said.

Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626069)

Screensavers, music, and Unicode... and photoshopping himself into James Bond photos.

Hm.

Well I guess that explains then what he's been doing instead of fricking finishing Perl 6!!!

Seriously man I have completed a college education and an entire generation of video game consoles have passed in the time that Perl 6 has been coming "Real Soon Now".

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626093)

Actually, he was patiently waiting for you to finish your college education before releasing PERL 6. Took a while, eh?

An entire generation of video game consoles. (3, Interesting)

Anon.Pedant (892943) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626112)

Wow, an entire generation of video game consoles! What is that, six months?

Re:An entire generation of video game consoles. (1)

sabernet (751826) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626142)

That would be true for PCs. Console life is generally between 4-6 years.

Length of a video game console generation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626200)

Six years if you're Sony, three years if you're Microsoft.

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (1)

iggymanz (596061) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626153)

well, it looks like Perl 6 initial release would be in 18 months, IF the language spec was done now and all effort put into Parrot. But since that isn't happening, isn't going to happen, Larry will fart around with language design for at least another year, Parrot will flounder around for another 2 or more, and maybe by 2009 or end of decade we'll have Perl 6. If you haven't gotten disgusted and moved to Python or Ruby by then, that is.

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (5, Funny)

chromatic (9471) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626262)

Well I guess that explains then what he's been doing instead of fricking finishing Perl 6!!!

The sinister Perl 6 cabal briefly debated unlocking Larry from the chains holding him to his desk for 23 and a half hours every day until the first stable release so he could respond, but this comment has given us a much needed sense of perspective: some random jackass on the Internet has nothing better to do than complain. It's back to the salt mines for Mr. Wall!

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (5, Informative)

lullabud (679893) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626293)

From my understanding of the situation, it's not his position to be finishing Perl 6, it's the communities.
"Perl 5 was my rewrite of Perl. I want Perl 6 to be the community's rewrite of Perl and of the community."
--Larry Wall, State of the Onion speech, TPC4

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (3, Insightful)

hobuddy (253368) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626690)

I want Perl 6 to be the community's rewrite of Perl and of the community.

And that's the chief reason why it's a directionless (or perhaps I should say omnidirectional) disaster that's not even close to production-ready after all these years. Programming language design by committee does not work.

Forced labour is not the open source way. (4, Insightful)

CyricZ (887944) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626296)

Forcing people to work is not the open source way. If he wants to work on Perl 6, then he'll do so. If he'd rather play around with Photoshop, then he'll do that, too. To suggest that he should be forced into working on his open source project, a project that has been a godsend for hundreds of thousands of programmers over the last decade and a half, is just plain ignorant. That's just not how things work in the open source community. Contributions are valued and appreciated, but nobody is forced to contribute.

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (1)

M. Piedlourd (68092) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626329)

Larry Wall, I demand that you stop having fun and get back to writing free software for me at once! Your Fan, M. Piedlourd

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (1, Flamebait)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626404)

who cares. PHP has surpassed perl by leaps and bounds. Perl needs to go backwards. it needs to be cleaned up and tightened down. Perl really needs to become the scripting language for embedded devices. That is where it could really shine.

Unfortunately it's bloatware now. Perl is a nightmare and large projects based on perl are even scarier.. (look at the web portal metadot... omfg that is a horrible bastardization) you need to take 10 times the number of steps to do something in Perl than what you need to do in php or python.

Dont get me wrong, I loved perl, it was my first love and still holds a place in my heart. but it has languashed and grew too big for it's britches.

It really needs Larry to take a good look at it and gut it hard and fast.

Unfortunately by the time it happens PHP and python will be bloated as perl and ruby will be the new hotness that everyone is turning to because it will have hit the useability/size/performace pivot table point that pushed php and python to the top today.

I loved perl, I really do not like what happened to it and what direction it is heading in.

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (1)

chromatic (9471) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626450)

I don't think you understand either PHP or Perl 6. Compare the count of core operators, for example, and consider that despite a few stabs at CLI use and GUI programming, PHP is not a general purpose programming language in any sense that Perl is.

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (3, Interesting)

Nataku564 (668188) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626479)

What, you dont like objects?

Quite frankly, a cleaned up object model is just what perl needs. Well, in addition to some standardized handling of threads, and some other features that most OO languages have.

Perl isn't Ruby. Perl isn't Python. Perl isn't PHP. Perl is its own animal/vegetable/mineral. It may not be your cup of tea, which is quite obvious, but thats a Good Thing. It means that Perl isn't giving into peer pressure from other programming languages and simply becoming a weak amalgam of language X/Y/Z with a few more dollar signs strewn about.

I like Perl. It truly makes coding a fun event for me. I am not bound by many of the restrictions of other languages, unless I want to be. It allows me to write a program in a form that more closely resembles the ideas and designs I have in my head than any other language I have tried.

Go Perl.

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626596)

but its way too big. it's redicilous how much you need to run those perl scripts. I should be able to fit the default perl install in a 15 meg amount of space. really I should be able to then add in the extras I need. but right now perl take at least 30meg and counting... also most projects using perl have a dependancy hell that makes newer C++ apps look like they are trimmed down.

I really agree with lumpy. but then I also think that PHP and python are getting too bloated as well. keep the core clean and mean then let people EASILY install the extras (perl needs to be able to have extras seperate like PHP does)

BTW, I also would kill for a perl interpeter in my phone or pda. right now it wont do that.

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (2, Insightful)

slavemowgli (585321) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626528)

I agree with chromatic: you obviously don't know a thing about Perl. And I'm not just referring to the technical level here; you probably could code a simple program in Perl, but you'd be working against the language instead of *with* the language, because you ultimately don't grok either Perl or its principles or the community behind it.

Go and play with PHP, kid. :) You think you may have known Perl, but you really never did.

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626559)

Perl and PHP are -both- steaming piles of inconsistency with Entirely Too Many Ways To Do Everything. Users spend so much time learning to program in bizarro upside-down land that they never leave Perl/PHP to discover any other language. They are too afraid it will hurt as much as learning Perl/PHP. So what either side has to say about the other is ridiculous.

Both languages are desperately clung to by monolingual scripters who typically write a thousand lines of spaghetti code, or better yet, 5000 lines of html and spaghetti code intertwined. That's the best.

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (1)

Tanktalus (794810) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626841)

Monolingual? Only by choice ;-)

Quick version of resume (skipping languages I don't know enough to use): C, C++, Java, shell, Perl (admittedly, no PHP nor Ruby). Quick version of what I use on a day-to-day basis: Perl. Monolingual? Yes. But that's because I'm 100x more productive in Perl than any other language I've learned thus far. Favourite language? C++. But I use perl to get my job done now rather than later.

Re:Screensavers, music, and Unicode? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626797)

Duke Nuken Forever is being written in Perl6.

Could it have been any more boring? (0, Flamebait)

xquark (649804) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626081)

I'm serious, where is the talent in discussing OSS these days...

Arash

Re:Could it have been any more boring? (2, Interesting)

Crusader7 (916280) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626216)

You've obviously never heard Larry Wall do one of these.

Re:Could it have been any more boring? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626351)

I'm serious, where is the talent in discussing OSS these days...

You must be new here! Talent discussion slashdot... erm.....

State of The Onion? (-1, Offtopic)

Cerdic (904049) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626082)

Bush Braces As Cindy Sheehan's Other Son Drowns In New Orleans

WASHINGTON, DC--Dynamic, well-liked Tyler Sheehan was found dead in the floodwaters, much to President Bush's horror.

The Onion [theonion.com] appears to still be doing its satirical news thing.

Re:State of The Onion? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626202)

Holy fucking shit. Talk about a lack of sense of humor.

What I've learned from Pugs. (3, Interesting)

CyricZ (887944) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626085)

Pugs is a Perl 6 implementation. It is written in Haskell. I recently fooled around with it. What did I learn? Haskell is powerful. Perhaps even more powerful than Perl. Indeed, as a long time Perl programmer I think that I will soon be abandoning Perl in favor of Haskell. Its functional capabilities are extremely useful when writing software that needs to work (think automated verification and such). And that's just the beginning. If the performance of the compiled code of GHC can be improved somewhat, then we might see Haskell revolutionize programming. It will do what Perl did in the early 1990s: open up a whole new set of development opportunities that just plain did not exist.

Re:What I've learned from Pugs. (4, Informative)

slavemowgli (585321) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626230)

Functional programming has been around for a long, long time, actually, but it has never revolutionised programming, so I'm not sure why Haskell should do it now - it's been around for almost 20 years already, too.

Not that functional languages don't have their merits, of course, but I honestly don't see why they should suddenly take over and obsolete other programming paradigms now.

That being said, have you taken a look at Curry? It's a language that combines functional and logical programming (à la Prolog) - definitely rather cool.

Of course functional programming is ancient. (2, Interesting)

CyricZ (887944) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626276)

Nobody was suggesting that Haskell is the first functional programming language. Of course not! But it has brought pure functional programming to the masses. Haskell's strong typing is a real plus.

Why is it taking over now? It's because we hit the limits of imperative languages years ago, and we're at the point of hitting the limits of object-oriented programming. That's why we're seeing applications that were traditionally implemented in C (such as a Perl implementation) being implemented using Haskell.

A language like Haskell allows more complex programs to be developed in less time, with fewer lines of code, and with enhanced stability and maintainability. While Perl was known for such things as well, Haskell offers native code compilation and the benefits of functional programming.

Indeed, we see that functional programming has had a massive impact on languages like Ruby and Python as of late. That's because the trend is moving towards techniques pioneered by languages like SML, and now made widely usable by Haskell.

I have looked at Curry, but I am not a fan of logical programming. I much prefer pure functional, or at worst an imperative, OO functional language such as O'Caml.

Re:Of course functional programming is ancient. (4, Informative)

slavemowgli (585321) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626356)

Oh, I didn't mean to imply that you said that Haskell was the first functional language - certainly not. I merely wanted to point out that Haskell isn't new, so if a revolution hasn't happened yet, why should it happen now?

I've met many people, especially at the university, who believed that functional languages were the holy grail of programming and that they would be taking over the (computer) world Real Soon Now(tm). But it's never happened, and nowadays, I believe that these people are just out of touch with reality.

Let's face it - the IT industry is just like any other industry, especially in one regard: things usually happen by evolution rather than revolution. Traits of functional programming languages will certainly find their way into the "mainstream" (and the "mainstream" languages), but nobody'll decide to just throw out all existing code all of a sudden and reinvent everything from the ground up in a new language - no matter how good that language is or, more important, how much better it is than the existing languages. Even object-oriented programming is really an extension of the imperative programming paradigm, not a replacement.

Paradigm shifts do occur, but they occur over time, and it's a smooth transition, not an abrupt one. Statements like "we've hit the limits of imperative languages" may sound cool, but they ultimately don't mean anything - the limits are changing. Boundaries *can* be pushed, and *that* is something that is *especially* true in the computer industry in general and the software industry in particular.

I won't deny that I'm not a fan of functional programming languages myself, of course. Personally, I think they're rather unnatural; it may be easier to model their semantics mathematically (and the mathematical models will be more "natural", too), but I also think that the step-by-step approach of imperative languages is more natural for the human mind - it's how we do things, and that's probably why imperative languages took off when functional languages didn't (and for the record, both functional and imperative programming language started at the same time, in the mid-50s, and the theoretical foundations, in the form of Turing machines and lambda calculus, also popped up at about the same time).

Nevertheless, I do realise that functional programming languages have some very interesting and useful features, and I'm certain that these will be incorporated into existing languages (or new languages based on existing ones, in the sense that Java is a new language based on C, for example) eventually - and that's a good thing. Pure functional programming, however, will (IMO!) always remain a specialised niche for certain, mostly mathematical (that is, theoretical) problems that naturally lend themselves to being modelled in functional ways.

Re:Of course functional programming is ancient. (1)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626604)

brought pure functional programming to the masses
Disagree.
The masses are about procedural programming, not functional.
Functional programming, IMHO, has a longer learning curve, and not all brains can do it as quickly, if ever.
This is more my empirical observation than an elitist assertion.

From the article (0, Flamebait)

WilliamSChips (793741) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626087)

If I were making an evil language, I wouldn't call it Python.
I'd call it Perl. Or perhaps Ruby. ;)

Re:From the article (1)

mindtriggerz (914619) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626133)

Perl is by far THE most EVIL C-looking languages out there.
And Ruby looks like VB. I like my semicolons.

Re:From the article (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626223)

It's powerful as hell, but a bitch to maintain.... That's why I moved to Python.
Perl still beats the hell out of reading APL a month after you write it though.

Re:From the article (3, Funny)

WilliamSChips (793741) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626252)

Now, now, just because Ruby's block syntax looks like VB's doesn't mean it deserves to be compared to VB...

Re:From the article (1, Offtopic)

JanneM (7445) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626279)

And Ruby looks like VB. I like my semicolons.

Which is about as fair as disliking Python for its use of indenting instead of braces. Me, I dislike Python because it has the name of a snake, and I'm phobic :) (only half kidding, actually; I have a real difficulty reading a book when it has a picture of a snake on the cover or when I know a drawing or picture of one could appear whenever I turn a page).

Re:From the article (2, Insightful)

pnatural (59329) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626313)

Python is named after Monty Python, not a reptile. Fear off!

Re:From the article (1)

JanneM (7445) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626882)

Python is named after Monty Python, not a reptile. Fear off!

I know. It doesn't really help since most books use the snake motif. If the O'Reilly books had used woodcuts of John Cleese sitting in a tree, thoughtfully munching on some leaves or something on the covers I'd had been fine.

I mean, it's not a big thing by itself, but it means I hesitate to pick up a book about the language (and if there is an actual snake on the cover, I literally have trouble picking it up), and the name evokes bad associations I can't help to unconciously partly carry over to my opinion of the language.

Ah well, Ruby looks nicer anyhow :)

Re:From the article (1, Troll)

poopdeville (841677) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626338)

Here's [blogger.com] an essay about why braces are inferior to tab delimiting. I know some people really dislike them, but the article offers quite a few good points (and laughs!). I thought it was a very interesting read.

Re:From the article (1)

mindtriggerz (914619) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626371)

You are a bad person. Sooooo Wrong...

Re:From the article (1)

WilliamSChips (793741) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626377)

Dude, that was just a pic of a snake in a toilet...
I'd suggest looking on the c2 wiki for info:
This should be it [c2.com]

Re:From the article (1)

JanneM (7445) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626891)

Possibly the single most expected post I could imagine. Everytime the question of phobias crop up in any forum, some immature kid thinks it's funny to try to trick people like this. You _really_ think I'm not careful to click on links in this kind of a situation?

Re:From the article (1)

CableModemSniper (556285) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626705)

this(is) { valid(ruby); syntax( ); }

Re:From the article (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626161)


If I were making an evil language, I wouldn't call it Python.
I'd call it Perl. Or perhaps Ruby. ;)


What about Rita?!? :)

You know you're tired when (4, Funny)

knightinshiningarmor (653332) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626090)

you read the summary and get the impression that President Larry Wall just gave the 9th State of the Union address and he loves pearls and onions.

Male to Female Ratio (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626099)

The Perl team has a lot of hot chicks on it.

Perl (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626108)

I say this now, to all you Perl wankers and Larry Wall, and as has been said so many times:

Perl has been immensely useful for what it's meant for. "One time"-run text processing scripts used by sysadmins. STOP WHILE YOU'RE AHEAD.

Anything more demanding, forget about it. You are doing a disservice to the people in general who use computers, as well as software folks who try desperately to put out decent products/services.

Re:Perl (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626140)

One acronym qpsmtpd [develooper.org] and another, HAND.

Finally! (3, Interesting)

erikharrison (633719) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626116)

Last couple "State of the Onion" addresses have been pretty bad - understandable, as Larry was getting increasingly ill, and Perl 5 was solidly in the hands of P5P and Perl 6 not yet pushing anything out.

Just started reading this one, and it is delighting me by not giving me the impression Larry is on his deathbed.

Oh geez... (5, Funny)

gbulmash (688770) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626139)

This is the first "State of the Onion" I've read, and probably the last. Lots of inside jokes and veiled allusions that the casual Perl dabbler just ain't gonna get.

With how inaccessible and cryptic it was, you'd think he'd written it in [insert name of programming language here]... ba-dump-bump.

- Greg

Re:Oh geez... (1)

iammaxus (683241) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626647)

With how inaccessible and cryptic it was, you'd think he'd written it in [insert name of programming language here]... ba-dump-bump. (emphasis added)

Actually, I would expect that language to be Perl.

Re:Oh geez... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626822)

wow.. you picked right up on that joke. We're all proud.

holy moly (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626180)

whoa ludicrous, slashdot now has mouseovers on the links! and the post a comment page is new!

ORIGINALITY (0, Redundant)

Cantide (743407) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626193)

HAHAHAH LOOK I AM MAKING A JOKE ABOUT THEONION.COM ON THE INTERNET

Lameness filter nothing- Everyone thought about making this joke and it's redundant before anyone even makes it.

Re:ORIGINALITY (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626234)

Everyone thought about making this joke and it's redundant before anyone even makes it.

You mean onion jokes have lost their a peel? [jacquespepin.net]

As a longtime and frequent perl programmer... (1)

Famanoran (568910) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626213)

This particular insight into the perl community had me chuckling at my desk.

I'm not exactly sure where I fit in, or anyone else for that matter, but hey - Wu-Li's word is like gold.

I've got high hopes for Perl6 - time will tell whether it's been worth the wait... (No, I haven't read the Apocalypses - I'll learn the language when it's released.)

Ridiculous (5, Insightful)

The Bungi (221687) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626214)

I'm sorry, but a lot of people are waiting for Perl6 and he has photoshopped James Bond, witty dialogue about nuclear weapons and faux videogame graphics. Parrot has been in alpha for what, 5 years now?

Perl can't continue to subsist solely on its established reputation of being the internet's 'glue'. An entire generation of developers have moved to other languages and frameworks. It looks more like Perl is going to end up as the next COBOL.

The world is moving on.

But COBOL is still used today. (2)

CyricZ (887944) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626249)

Don't forget that COBOL is still used today. It doesn't have the momentum it once had, of course. Perhaps you're right. The very same thing might happen to Perl. It won't be as widely used as it once was, but it will still be very useful to a lot of people. And it will be maintained, and there will be updates.

Re:But COBOL is still used today. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626504)

COBOL was used much more heavily than Perl (at one time being nearly 50% of the programming job market) and in much more critical roles (ERP). Frankly the comparison to Perl (which is 90% sysadmin scripts and simple web pages) is poor.

Re:Ridiculous (1)

OverlordQ (264228) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626326)

This isn't like going from Perl 5.7 to 5.8, there are *large* changes in Perl 6, not something you can do overnight.

Re:Ridiculous (1)

aralin (107264) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626696)

A lot of small time hackers think that if they picked python or ruby for their pet project instead of PERL than all of sudden everybody has done so and the language is going to die. Its simply not true. There are more jobs with PERL as requirement than there were anytime before and the usage of PERL overall is still growing. Its actually quite acceptable language of choice now that the Java hype has passed.

The fact is that alpha-geeks are moving on to the next new and cool technology or language out there, but the people that actually do software development for living are not moving anywhere. But every now and then some post about PERL comes out and there will be a troll pronouncing the death of PERL moderated as insightful.

The world is moving on ... to PERL.

Questions for Larry (-1, Troll)

The Ape With No Name (213531) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626246)

Ummm. Hi, Larry. Uh, I'm a long time Perl programmer but recently switched to Python. Tell me why I shouldn't.

Oh really? So Perl will be where Python is in, like, 2013?

So why should I stick with Perl?

Oh, it's a matter of personal choice?

So why should I choose Perl?

Because Tom Christiansen said so? Well, fuck that.

Re:Questions for Larry (4, Insightful)

slavemowgli (585321) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626564)

I'm not Larry Wall, but let me answer that one for you:

You should not stick to Perl religiously but rather use the best tool for the job you need to get done. TIMTOWTDI, remember? If Python works for you, that's fine; if Python works better for you than Perl, then by all means, do use Python!

That's not to say that your decision to use Python is automatically right, but it's not automatically wrong, either, and without any knowledge whatsoever about the project you're working on, your personal preferences, your experiences and all that, how do you expect *us* (that is, the Perl community, although I can only speak for myself, of course) to tell you whether Perl or Python is the better tool for your job?

That's up to you to decide - we don't care what you use, although we may be interested in hearing why you didn't choose Perl.

Re:Questions for Larry (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626605)

Ruby is the next logical step from Perl, not Python. Seriously, Python sucks... it's so verbose you might as well just use C or C++, it'll be faster.

This fP f0r GNAA (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626261)

thaT c0mprise

Perl Had Too Much Security (3, Interesting)

istartedi (132515) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626396)

Job security, that is. It was so easy to write "job security applications" in Perl that even PHBs caught on to it. The next web scripting language should be based on a very careful study of how obtuse the syntax can be before the cost of maintaining it will be enough to make IT managers cry "enough is enough!" and throw out the entire application. And yes, although I was not the actual maintenance programmer on a Perl app, I was close enough to those who were to understand what had happened, The nature of Perl is such that it was probably not intentional. I mean, it looked like the code was well organized, but no God help anybody who wanted to change it.

Re:Perl Had Too Much Security (2, Interesting)

Nataku564 (668188) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626523)

I maintain a somewhat large Perl framework at my workplace. Designed properly, Perl can be very maintainable. Its particularly awesome for the kinds of hack jobs the financial industry demands.

Unless... (2, Informative)

sootman (158191) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626424)

...he can top "Perl6 will give you the big knob [slashdot.org] ," I see no reason to tune in. :-)

Perl 6 is a mistake. (0, Troll)

keesh (202812) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626486)

I've been using perl pretty much constantly since the Pink Camel, and believe me, Perl 5 is an extremely good language for quick scripting things. That's what it was designed for. Sure, you can do big projects in it, but it's not exactly ideal. Recently I've started using Ruby [ruby-lang.org] as well, and I intend to move my department over to it instead of wasting time with Perl 6.

One of the goals of Perl 6 is to make non-trivial projects possible. That's good. The way it's being done is bad. Perl was once a lightweight, extremely flexible language. Now it's become a huge ugly monster [kde.org] . People wanted OO, so a nasty hack was bolted on top to allow some semblance of it. Now this nasty hack is being expanded. Sure, the code's different, but the basic form is the same. Kludge upon kludge upon kludge; I'd much rather have a nice, clean, pure language [rubycentral.com] (and not one with loads of irritating whitespace [python.org] thank you very much).

The same goes for the syntax. All the switching between $, @ and % is really irritating (ask a newbie how to get at the length of the keys array of a hash inside a hash, for example), and the changes proposed for 6 are just making this worse -- it seems that Larry, in his infinite wisdom, wants to prefix every data type with a different hard-to-type character. Perl was only designed for the three data types, and adding more is a mess.

Perl 6 is a complete rewrite, but it keeps all the mess which has accumulated over the previous versions. This is not good. Sure, my const int $var = 27; may look neat (in the same way that, say, Pascal [lysator.liu.se] does), but $var isn't entirely constant, or entirely an integer, it's just a hack which makes it sort of behave like one. It's like Ada all over again! The whole thing is an exercise in pseudo-computer science masturbation with little real purpose except to please the managers who dislike the one thing that makes Perl special.

On a similar note is regexes. I'm an avid fan of regular expressions simply because a nondeterministic finite automata is far more flexible than linear code. However, Larry must have been smoking that cheap $2 crack when he wrote this [perl.com] . Does he want Perl 6 to be flex [gnu.org] or something?

I won't be going on to use 6. It's a nice idea, but it's completely unnecessary. It won't make large projects any easier to manage (the language is still, at heart, an almighty hack -- an impressive one, but still a hack). It won't make OO any cleaner. It won't make development any faster. I'd prefer to use a language [ruby-lang.org] which has always been pure synthesis of science and engineering, not some half-baked imposter [beonex.com] .

Perl 6 will be nice, but I'm guessing it will be the end of Perl. It can't do what it wants to do whilst still being based upon a nasty mess. There are now other options, which provide all of Perl's power and none of the mess. Sorry, but *BSD^H^H^H^H Perl is dying.


Re:Perl 6 is a mistake. (2, Insightful)

slavemowgli (585321) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626554)

It's amazing how quickly you can cast off Perl 6 when there's not even an alpha version of the interpreter yet (Pugs doesn't count) and when even the specs are not set in stone yet.

I think what you're exhibiting here is what I'd like to refer to as an "inverse God complex"
("inverse" is not the best word, admittedly, but I can't think of a better one) - you do a thought experiment where you try to do something (improve Perl), find that you can't do so in two minutes, and thus conclude that failure is *inevitable* (hence a God complex: if you can't do it, noone can) and that any *actual* attempt to do so must automatically fail as well.

Nevermind, of course, that lots of people, most of them much more intelligent than you and me, have worked on this problem for years; you're still able to not only dismiss their current work, but also all the work they have not done yet and conclude that they're not only doomed to fail, but in fact fail so catastrophically that Perl will die - that is already is dying.

Yes, definitely a God complex. Sorry.

Re:Perl 6 is a mistake. (1)

Bastian (66383) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626782)

It's amazing how quickly you can cast off Perl 6 when there's not even an alpha version of the interpreter yet (Pugs doesn't count) and when even the specs are not set in stone yet.

You don't need a finished interpreter for a language to be able to see the language definition and know that the syntax is an ungodly mess.

I loves perl for banging out quick scripts for munging data. I loves perl for being able to do all sorts of crazy crap to text files in a one-liner. But I _will_not_ use perl for anything remotely complicated, because the syntax for doing anything more complicated than blasting some text through a regexp or dumping some data into a one-dimensional array is such an ungodly kludge that I might as well be coding in befunge.

I don't think it's even possible turn perl5 into a language that's well-adapted to serious application development. You could create a perl-inspired language for those tasks, but it wouldn't be perl, and that doesn't seem to be what perl6 is doing.

Whitespace (2, Funny)

Sweetshark (696449) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626607)

> (and not one with loads of irritating whitespacethank you very much).
If thats the only problem with Python (and until you are a bit more explicit, one can pretty much assume so), its gotta be a great language.

(Oh, BTW you are missing a whitespace there between the words "whitespace" and "thank")

Re:Perl 6 is a mistake. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626612)

Actually, the regex stuff is the coolest part of Perl 6. Unix regexs NEED an overhaul badly, and Perl is probably the only language respected enough to pull it off.

But yeah, the rest of it is quite frightening and does remind me of Ada at times.

Hopefully Ruby will have Unicode support and a bytecode compiler soon, that's about all that I need to use it exclusively. And Lisp of course, which is the limiting case for all these languages. :-)

Troll? (1)

CaptainPinko (753849) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626748)

Can someone check if this is a trool? I believe I have read this post before and the line Does he want Perl 6 to be flex or something? is making me deja vu again. I'm not saying this is a troll... just that it sure seems like it could be a copy-n-paste.

Re:Perl 6 is a mistake. (2, Informative)

moof1138 (215921) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626849)

Your post seems oddly familiar...

Perl 6 is a mistake [slashdot.org]

Perl 6 is a mistake [slashdot.org]

Perl 6 is a mistake [slashdot.org]

This is really getting to be a bit tiresome.

BTW, moderators, please stop modding this troll up over and over every time Perl comes up.

Larry Wall, along with Donald Knuth... (0, Offtopic)

Eunuch (844280) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626500)

...are in fact Christians. Just a fact. May make you want to use what they come up with more. Or maybe less. I just know I often have a choice when it comes to computer languages. And this could be a factor.

Re:Larry Wall, along with Donald Knuth... (1)

jandrese (485) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626576)

I have no idea why that would matter in the least. It's not like they integrate their faith into their language or anything.

It'll become obsolete even before it comes out (0, Offtopic)

melted (227442) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626508)

Check this out: http://channel9.msdn.com/Showpost.aspx?postid=1146 80 [msdn.com] and make sure you watch it to the end.

INSANE stuff. MSFT may have a winner with that one.

Screw Perl 6 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626635)

Seriously... I once thought it was going to be something but not any more. The whole design is moronic.

Hey Larry! Dumbass! Everyone has moved on. Loads of people are using Python (although I don't know why, blech). People who know what they are doing and understand what made Perl so great are using Ruby [ruby-lang.org] ... and PHP is out there too.

Mmmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626669)

...and Perl 6 is coming out how "real soon now"?...

Wall's cast of characters (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626684)

Yet another idea Wall is stealing from Ruby.

Was seen first in "Why's Poignant Guide to Ruby"
http://www.poignantguide.net/ruby/ [poignantguide.net]

Chunky Bacon !!!!

pageturning issues (2, Interesting)

zoogies (879569) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626717)

Am I the only one for whom the "next" completely fails at life and the internet? It's not just that, sometimes clicking on the page numbers does it too - sometimes. A firefox thing, or is it their fault?

State of the Onion (1)

McLetter (915953) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626749)

I recently started learning perl and this is the first state of the onion that I've read. I think they went a little overboard with the props and whatnot, they should have focused more on information.

you Fa1l It (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13626853)

Damnit Larry... (1)

el-spectre (668104) | more than 8 years ago | (#13626903)

What, exactly, is wrong with "Spectre" ???
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