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Commercial perl software?

by eduardo (Curate)
on Feb 22, 2003 at 17:00 UTC ( #237763=perlmeditation: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??

Greetings! I work with an ex-lucent guy who, although he understands how people enjoy VHLLs such as Perl, doesn't believe they have any place in the world of commercial (read: product) software development. He knows that they are useful for an MIS shop environment, but he feels that they are "wrong" for commercial development. His statement is that a mantra at Lucent/Bell was that any package which you were going to sell for a platform should be developed following the mantra "go native." In other words, if the OS was written in C, write your application in C, if the OS was written in C++, write your application in C++, etc... I won't reproduce his argument here, as I'm sure most of you can figure it out (compatibility, speed, next revision, yadda yadda yadda.) So, I want some help! Could the perlmonks community help me out by helping me put together a list of *commercial* packages that have been written in scripting languages? Preferably perl, but any scripting language will help my argument. Thanks!

Comment on Commercial perl software?
Re: Commercial perl software?
by Abigail-II (Bishop) on Feb 22, 2003 at 18:39 UTC
    First of all, just because someone charges for a software product doesn't mean it's good. Just like that open source doesn't mean it's good.

    The only commercial Perl software I know of is a mud written in Perl, written by Thomas Boutell, the same person who wrote the GD library (the C library, not the Perl interface). However, there is commercial software out there of which at least pieces have been written in Perl. Veritas cluster software for instance. Solaris also comes with some tools written in Perl. Some HP Openview programs are written in Perl.

    Abigail

Re: Commercial perl software?
by Enlil (Parson) on Feb 22, 2003 at 19:10 UTC
    I agree with Abigail-II's statements about assuming what makes software good. That said though, perl.com has an article on radiator.

    -enlil

Re: Commercial perl software?
by toma (Vicar) on Feb 22, 2003 at 19:43 UTC
    All good CAD tools use a scripting language inside of a compiled application. The scripting languages tend to look like either perl, lisp, or forth.

    The core application is typically written in C or C++. Many features are implemented in the scripting language. The scripting language is also documented and delivered to the customer to use for customization.

    Customization is good for keeping customers, who's cumulative effort tends to lock them in.

    Compiling the underlying application also makes it easier to implement a software licensing scheme.

    Examples of CAD tools with this approach are made by Mentor Graphics, Cadence, AutoDesk, and *many* others. Some of the CAD systems use perl, either embedded as the extension language or as an independent executable.

    It should work perfectly the first time! - toma

Re: Commercial perl software?
by adrianh (Chancellor) on Feb 22, 2003 at 20:08 UTC
Re: Commercial perl software?
by Solo (Deacon) on Feb 22, 2003 at 20:13 UTC
    The VMWare management console is written in Perl.

    --Solo

    --
    I think my eyes are getting better. Instead of a big dark blur, I see a big light blur.
Re: Commercial perl software?
by fhe (Novice) on Feb 23, 2003 at 00:36 UTC
    Well, Radiator is such a product. To quote directly from their website (http://www.open.com.au/radiator/index.html):

    Radiator is the highly flexible, configurable and extensible Radius server from Open System Consultants. Designed from the ground up to offer features and options not found in any other Radius server, it uses the latest Object Oriented technology to achieve superior reliability and flexibility.

    With more than 20 different authentication methods available, and support for most Unix and PC platforms, Radiator is the Radius server for serious ISPs and carriers who want power and flexibility to meet the needs of their growing user base.


    There is quite a good article about it on www.perl.com: http://www.perl.com/pub/a/2002/10/15/radiator.html.

    Additionally, Rational is maintaining an interface to Rational Clearcase (see http://search.cpan.org/author/RATL/).
Re: Commercial perl software?
by PodMaster (Abbot) on Feb 23, 2003 at 00:44 UTC
    I ran into
    http://www.smart-perl-makefiles-now.com
    somewhat recently. It's commercial sofware as far as I understand it.


    MJD says you can't just make shit up and expect the computer to know what you mean, retardo!
    I run a Win32 PPM repository for perl 5.6x+5.8x. I take requests.
    ** The Third rule of perl club is a statement of fact: pod is sexy.

Re: Commercial perl software?
by NodeReaper (Curate) on Feb 23, 2003 at 00:55 UTC

    Reason: chromatic (delete) please do not feed the bears

    For more information on this node visit: this

Re: Commercial perl software?
by Thelonius (Curate) on Feb 23, 2003 at 02:02 UTC
    Sanface sells txt2pdf and a few other PDF tools written in Perl.
Re: Commercial perl software?
by Wysardry (Pilgrim) on Feb 23, 2003 at 04:20 UTC

    A search on Perl and Commercial at Hotscripts gives 51 matches, though many more can be found by browsing, as usually a specific price is given rather than using the word "Commercial".

    Infopop have done rather well with their commercial UBB forum series.

    __________
    "Every program has at least one bug and can be shortened by at least one instruction -- from which, by induction, one can deduce that every program can be reduced to one instruction which doesn't work." -- (Author Unknown)

      UBB at least up to early v6 releases (I didn't follow it any further) is also the biggest heap of trash I've ever seen. Allegedly some new guys that came on board around that time worked on getting it cleaner, but nowadays it has largely been eclipsed by vBulletin (written in PHP) anyway.

      Makeshifts last the longest.

        Hey, I didn't say that it was well-written, just that it sold quite well. ;o)

        It was one of the best known forums available at one time, although the freeware, shareware and open source alternatives have eclipsed it since then.

        The most popular of these is probably phpBB, although you're likely right about vBulletin being the most popular commercial forum.

        __________
        "Every program has at least one bug and can be shortened by at least one instruction -- from which, by induction, one can deduce that every program can be reduced to one instruction which doesn't work." -- (Author Unknown)

Re: Commercial perl software?
by blahblahblah (Priest) on Feb 23, 2003 at 05:10 UTC
    There are a couple of successful commercial helpdesk products that I know of that are written in perl:  footprints and wonderdesk.

    As far as your discussion with your co-worker about commercial programs written in scripting languages, I think you need to clarify what you mean by "scripting language". What is a "script" as opposed to an application? What is a scripting language? When you say script, I think of short shell scripts, windows .bat files, or short perl utilities that I've written. While these languages are all great for writing quick scripts, perl differs in that it is just as well suited for writing large and complex programs.

    When you view perl as a full featured programming language and compare it to C or C++, it's clear that some things are easier to do in perl. The web based programs I mentioned do a lot of text processing, which is easier in perl where you don't have to worry about memory allocation, typing, or other low level details as much. That leads to quicker development and easier maintenance, which are important factors for a commercial product.

    I think visual basic is a good counter-example to your coworker's rule. Many commercial apps are written in it. The mantra at Lucent/Bell may have worked well because many of their programs were lower-level, hardware-interfacing sorts of programs. Visual basic, perl, etc., make the user interface and some other programming tasks easy, and often rely on libraries and built-in functions for the lower level stuff.

Re: Commercial perl software?
by valdez (Monsignor) on Feb 23, 2003 at 09:55 UTC
Re: Commercial perl software?
by iguanodon (Curate) on Feb 23, 2003 at 12:57 UTC
    WebEvent sells a set of web based calendar tools written in Perl. Note that this is both commercial (as in not freeware) and open source (as in you can tweak the code if you want to).

Re: Commercial perl software?
by jonadab (Parson) on Feb 23, 2003 at 21:28 UTC
    "go native." In other words, if the OS was written in C, write your application in C, if the OS was written in C++, write your application in C++, etc...

    This mantra is significantly oversimplistic. Ask him what language should be used for writing apps for VMS. Then, if he manages to cough up any kind of answer at all, ask him what language should be used to write an application that by virtue of its problem domain needs to be deployed on multiple different types of OSes and multiple different hardware architectures. Say that the exact list of necessary platforms will change on a per-customer basis.


    sub H{$_=shift;while($_){$c=0;while(s/^2//){$c++;}s/^4//;$ v.=(' ','|','_',"\n",'\\','/')[$c]}$v}sub A{$_=shift;while ($_){$d=hex chop;for(1..4){$pl.=($d%2)?4:2;$d>>=1}}$pl}$H= "16f6da116f6db14b4b0906c4f324";print H(A($H)) # -- jonadab
Re: Commercial perl software?
by Starky (Chaplain) on Feb 23, 2003 at 21:40 UTC
    I have done some consulting for a company (which shall remain nameless) whose primary product is a cross-platform systems monitoring tool which includes automated performance tuning and optimization. It is written in Perl.

    The product is quite robust and highly customizable, taking advantage of the ability that Perl confers to quickly implement customized tools on a variety of platforms.

    And it's done well through the downturn.

    Mention should also be made of all the web sites which are built with Perl. Are those not commercial products?

Re: Commercial perl software?
by rogerluce (Beadle) on Feb 24, 2003 at 01:02 UTC
    While not Perl, about 10 years ago worked on a database/trading-analysis system written entirely in APL. It was a commercial system, running on Intel PC's of the day (286/386/486). Allowed for rapid development / changes, and customizations for each site. Had roughly 200 clients when I left. Not shrink-wrapped software, but good for their niche. A benefit of an interpreted language and remote-access software, was we could dial-up, step through the program, debug & fix. The curse of that environment was, we could dial-up, step through the program, debug & fix... the main developers often used customers as alpha-testers.
Re: Commercial perl software?
by zemote (Scribe) on Feb 24, 2003 at 07:11 UTC
    All of RedHat's GUI tools that they have written have been done in python and pygtk. What people have to realize when building applications is what are the requirements and using the best tool for the job. If speed is your main concern with the app then you may want to consider c or assembler. But if speed is not a concern then you may want to consider a scripting language. Many factors come in to play when choosing a language to code a project and there is no perfect language. --zemote--
Re: Commercial perl software?
by fsn (Friar) on Feb 24, 2003 at 09:29 UTC
    The Lucent product VitalQIP (or what the marketing name is these days) uses Perl and other scripting languages, at least for the WebGUI, system management etc.

    Come to think of it, there are probably a zillion commercial WebGUIs written in Perl. I've even written one myself.

Re: Commercial perl software?
by Anonymous Monk on Feb 24, 2003 at 17:48 UTC
    The ex-lucent guy is right. Name me one commerial software product that is written in Perl.
      Ummmm... did you read any of the other posts? Like this one, for example.
Re: Commercial perl software?
by Cabrion (Friar) on Feb 25, 2003 at 04:35 UTC
    Did you mention that Lucent is broke 'cause of pig-headed idiots like him? I have to support their crap in the real world and it SUCKS!

    Lucent can't even tell me why I need a dedicated machine for every program they convince our CFO to buy.

    Just smile and walk away.

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