Choose Your Own Perlventure

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What's the future of Perl? Let's look ahead five years to the possibilities.

(Note: like all intelligent, attractive, and good-hearted people, I use the term "Perl" to refer to the entire Perl ecosystem and all versions of Perl. If you want to argue that "Perl" has, now and forever, always meant only "Perl 5", please set your time machine to late 2000 when that argument was relevant and, albeit barely, worth having. If you don't have a time machine, consider that a decade is long enough to have learned some coping skills and rethink your priorities.)

Who Uses What

  • No one uses Perl, any version, for new projects.
  • Some people use Perl 5 and some people use Perl 6.
  • Most people use Perl 5 and almost no one uses Perl 6.
  • Most people use Perl 6 and almost no one uses Perl 5.

What do they use it for?

  • New development.
  • Maintenance of existing projects.
  • Porting from other languages.

What's the relationship of Perl 5 to Perl 6?

  • One has subsumed the other.
  • One has failed and the other has survived.
  • Perl 5 is becoming Perl 6 as much as possible.
  • Perl 6 allows you to use Perl 5 in process.

What New Features Does Perl 5 Have?

  • A foreign function interface
  • A real object system with syntax and everything
  • An improved exception system
  • An improved concurrency system
  • Function signatures
  • Grammars
  • Junctions
  • Strictures by default
  • None of these
  • All of these

Do You Still Use Perl?

  • Yes
  • No

Is Perl Healthier Then Than Now?

  • Yes
  • No

With all of your answers, you have a decision to make. Do you like this future? If so, great!

If not (and here I admit to some concern myself), how can we make the future more appealing?

2 Comments

Strange no one commented so far. Was this a rhetoric question?

I don't think there is some extraordinary thing we need to do. Just continue doing the good things you have been doing. A few of them that came to my mind:

  • write more awesome code either in Perl 5 or 6
  • integrate with other technologies (mobile?)
  • build applications used by others
  • talk about the stuff you do to potential users
  • get more people using your modules/applications
  • involve more people in your code/application/design/documentation
  • ... including people who are not Perl programmers
  • help bridging the gap between companies using Perl and the community
  • help the people who pick the programming language to make Perl an easy choice

I use Perl 5 since 1992 (almost 20 years! :) ), I love it and try to use it in every new projects @home and @$work. The first missing thing that come to mind after all these years, is to have a real object system based on Moose (which is a wonderful object system) included in core, compact and fast, possibly with function/method signatures (your "method" patch is a good starting point :) )

We can do fabulous thinks with perl, we now have many modules that allow us to make great applications (yes applications, not scripts), like events frameworks (AnyEvent, POE, ...), web frameworks (Catalyst, Mojolicious, Dancer, ...), integrating each in the others (see Twiggy for example).

It can even be used in embedded platform, we do it at work. What else? :)

And it is fast, to develop and to run!

Every day, I try to demonstrate this fact at work with concrete results. The Planet Perl Iron Man blogs aggregator is a good think and confirm the revival of the Perl community.

I hope Perl 6 will be soon usable in production, this new language is awesome. But at this time, I stay concentrated on Perl 5...

Do You Still Use Perl ? YES of course!

Is Perl Healthier Then Than Now ? Healthier than never!

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This page contains a single entry by chromatic published on February 9, 2011 12:27 PM.

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