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To be Good at PERL

by ostra (Novice)
on May 08, 2013 at 02:44 UTC ( #1032562=perlquestion: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??
ostra has asked for the wisdom of the Perl Monks concerning the following question:

I learned how to program in C and PERL languages. My objective is to know PERL very well. I learned C only to know basic programming lingo such as if and while statments,what is a pointer, etc. Now, Do I need to know C++ to become a very good PERL probrammer? I ask this becuase the book I read the author stated that you need to know an Object orintated language. Thank You in advance for any replies? Ostra

Comment on To be Good at PERL
Re: To be Good at PERL
by LanX (Canon) on May 08, 2013 at 02:58 UTC
    As soon as you are a "very good Perl programmer", you are a very good programmer in the other languages. ;-)

    Cheers Rolf

    ( addicted to the Perl Programming Language)

    PS: No, you don't need any knowledge in C++ to learn Perl!

    update

    added smiley.

      I don't think so.

      Once you are a good programmer in any language you may be able to get productive in a different one of the same family (for instance, in Perl case, imperative object oriented languages) in a very short time.

      Becoming a very good programmer in the other language is a completely different matter. It may take a long time because you will have to learn the idioms, quirks, libraries, culture, etc. For instance, becoming a very good C++ programmer even if you know Perl well would probably be a years task.

      If the language is of a different kind, as for instance Haskell, then you know mostly nothing.

        I wasn't too serious. Sorry for forgetting the emoticon!

        edit

        But my point is the definition of "very good Perl programmer", opinions may vary... =)

        Some people don't know how to use any OO or FP techniques, but think knowing all features of pack by heart qualifies them to be a very good Perl programmer.

        Cheers Rolf

        ( addicted to the Perl Programming Language)

        update

        typo: s/map/pack/

Re: To be Good at PERL
by Anonymous Monk on May 08, 2013 at 03:02 UTC

      Thank you for the reply. I clicked the link Teach yourself programming in Ten Years. It had this as one of the things you needed to do: Learn at least a half dozen programming languages. Include one language that supports class abstractions (like Java or C++), one that supports functional abstraction (like Lisp or ML), one that supports syntactic abstraction (like Lisp), one that supports declarative specifications (like Prolog or C++ templates), one that supports coroutines (like Icon or Scheme), and one that supports parallelism (like Sisal). Can you please comment? Ostra

        Learning any of those languages and techniques can change the way you think about programming and solving problems. Learning new things that challenge you is often worthwhile.

        You don't have to know any of those things to write good Perl that solves real problems for real people. It will help, but practical experience in programming—not just writing the same toy programs over and over again—in any form is the best way to become a better programmer.

Re: To be Good at PERL
by jonadab (Parson) on May 08, 2013 at 09:43 UTC

    You certainly don't need to know C++ to be good at Perl.

    Having a true object-oriented language in your background might help, but C++ is nowhere near object-oriented enough to make any significant difference in that regard (especially if you learned C first and then moved to C++, which will lead you to write mostly procedural C++ code); and a functional language (e.g., Lisp) would help a lot more, IMO; and in any case if your goal is to be good at Perl no other language will help you more than Perl itself.

    Anything more than a cursory knowledge of C is actively detrimental (at first), because it leads to bad habits. This can be overcome, simply by working with Perl more, but there's no advantage to it (from a Perl perspective) until you reach the point (years down the road) where you're ready to start digging into the perl internals.

    If your goal is to learn Perl, then you should study Perl. Write code in Perl that does useful things. Hang out on Perlmonks and read more than you post. Go back over your old code that you wrote in Perl a few months ago and notice which kinds of things that you did make it easy to understand and modify and which kinds of things make it difficult. Study Perl, use Perl, learn Perl.

      You certainly don't need to know C++ to be good at Perl.

      Having a true object-oriented language in your background might help, but C++ is nowhere near object-oriented enough to make any significant difference in that regard (especially if you learned C first and then moved to C++, which will lead you to write mostly procedural C++ code); and a functional language (e.g., Lisp) would help a lot more, IMO; and in any case if your goal is to be good at Perl no other language will help you more than Perl itself.

      I could not agree more.

Re: To be Good at PERL
by vsespb (Hermit) on May 08, 2013 at 12:10 UTC
    If yo're going to write system programs in Perl (at least unix programs), you'd better known C. Most of documentation for perl system calls maps to corresponding C call, and you have to read Unix/C documentation.
Re: To be Good at PERL
by blue_cowdawg (Monsignor) on May 08, 2013 at 14:13 UTC
        My objective is to know PERL very well.

    Son: How do I get to Carnegie Hall?
    Father: Practice. Lots of practice.

    The point of that old saw is that to be good at anything requires practice. It doesn't matter if it is Tae Kwon Do, baseball, riding a bike, carpentry, brewing beer or writing code. You start off at a particular skill and get better with practice. How much progress over a delta of time depends on your inborn aptitude for that skill. I'll never be a Major League baseball player because I don't have the aptitude (nor interest) in achieving that level of skill.

    One of my passionate pursuits in in the realm of culinary arts. I am a crappy baker (aptitude and interest strike again) but can cook seven course dinners that cause people that have experienced them to question why I never opened a restaurant. Yet I remember 40 years ago some of the stuff I cooked being barely edible.

    So.. keep coding... keep practicing. It also might hep to track down someone to mentor you and critique your code.


    Peter L. Berghold -- Unix Professional
    Peter -at- Berghold -dot- Net; AOL IM redcowdawg Yahoo IM: blue_cowdawg
Re: To be Good at PERL
by BillKSmith (Chaplain) on May 08, 2013 at 14:58 UTC

    Knowing perl well and writting good perl programs are not at all the same thing. A person can know a small subset of perl, but use it well. Another person may clutter his program with poor use of obscure features. Try to be one of the first. Then learn new features and modules. Use them as needed to make your programs clearer, smaller, faster, or more robust. This process should never end.

    The OO paradigm is dificult to learn, but largly independent of language. Your books mean that if you know C++, you have alredy climbed this hill.

    Bill

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