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Re: Seeker Of Perl Sympathy

by demerphq (Chancellor)
on Jan 09, 2005 at 10:19 UTC ( #420664=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Seeker Of Perl Sympathy

Perl is a "write only" language.
I've found that most people who say this are uncomfortable with sigils. They look at a piece of code and see all these weird symbols everywhere and they get confused. Their inability to read sigilized code makes them assume that nobody can read perl. What they miss is that sigils make thing _easier_ to read once you understand their signifigance. What they also tend to forget is that langugaes without sigils often end up emulating them with variable prefixes ala hungarian notation and friends. Next time someone says something about the sigils in perl, ask them what lpzw_foo is. (Or pick a better example :-)
People say Perl doesnt have "proper" Data Structures
Well, perl doesnt have structs or records with compact representation and compile time resolution. But thats ok, you can more easily prototype behaviour in Perl than in most other languages (modifying the data structure on the fly is trivial in Perl and extremely difficult in other langauges). But turn this one around, challenge them to write an implementation of a basic Binary tree with built in serialization support at the same time you do the same in Perl. Let them explain why they took so long to do what you did in only a hundred lines of code (or less.) Ask them which they think is easier to maintain. Dont let them suck you into a execution speed contest or a memory profile contest. Just point out that CPU time is cheaper than Programmer time and has been so for a long time.

As a last point you should educate your colleagues as to the ease with which one can link to external libraries and custom code. Grant to them the point that some core features should be implemented in C or the like, but ask them to demonstrate why anything that doesnt have stringent speed and memory requirements is better written in the other language. If they are C programmers point out that Perl + C is much easier to maintain than Shell + C, and ask them to demonstrate why their forty lines of C code is better value for money (programmer time) than your one line regex (as an example.)


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Re^2: Seeker Of Perl Sympathy
by Anonymous Monk on Jan 09, 2005 at 17:33 UTC
    RE: "Dont let them suck you into a execution speed contest or a memory profile contest. Just point out that CPU time is cheaper than Programmer time and has been so for a long time.",

    . . .I would add that most of the time while a user is sitting in front of a workstation, nothing is going on in the machine (regarding that user's session). How often is something clicked or the Enter key pressed?

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[1nickt]: Or for a little more control, Email::Sender:: Simple
[Perl300]: any suggestion on which one might be secure and simplest. I am not doing anything complex, just check some conditions from DB tables and send email to myself (same domain) if conditions are met
[1nickt]: read the doc of the suggestions I just gave
[1nickt]: A lot depends on whether you are sending mail from your local box or using a remote server
[hippo]: Secure in what sense?
[Perl300]: I am sending from remote server
[1nickt]: Then see Email::Sender:: Transport::SMTP
[Perl300]: secure in sense it should not cause any security concerns, create some loop holes.... I don't know much about it but don't want to cause any problem for security guys here
[Perl300]: I used sendmail before for a few times but read that is causes some security issues so trying something better/secure this time
[1nickt]: If you use a remote SMTP server there should be no local security issues. Your mail server probably wants an encrypted connection, so the message contents cannot be stolen.

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