After reading an absolutely phenomenal article (well, I think so) by tye
, I thought to myself "Why isn't there a Perl Monk's Bible" in print?
So, I did a search, which turned up an article by princepawn
a while back, called Perl Monks Cookbook
After reading the replies to that, I found myself wondering more and more why that idea didn't seem to have carried forward.
Perl Monks is an organisation, albeit a loose one, of quite a few very talented people, quite a few of who I've noticed are very eloquent, clear and enlightening.
It does seem that it's a waste to not
put the words of wisdom into print.
However, there were a lot of valid points in the cookbook thread that do need to be addresses, some of which are not mutually exclusive.
What follows is merely a thought to toy with, but it would be interesting to see where it goes:
- Perl Monks is and organisation. Rather than it be authored by anyone, perhaps have it authored by Perl Monks as the organisation, for the express purpose of raising funds for the site, and investing in Open Source Perl projects/resource.
- The perl Monks documentation is always being talked about, and overhauls are always being called for. How about presenting this in book format now, with chapters dealing with certain aspects, with a full table of contents and index. This would be highly advantageous for keeping the Perl Monks docs in order, and pushing this project along too.
- The question of who owns the answers posted here was talked about. Persuing the idea of a book would entail this be looked at and resolved. I for one would be more than slightly interested to know who does own rights to what I write. I've no aversion to anything I may conceivably do being used in any way necessary to help Perl and Perl Monks. I wouldn't feel quite to happy to know that some other organisation owned it, which I may not be aware of. This would, once and for all, clear that question.
- The publication of a book would raise the profile of Perl Monks immeasurably. I stumbled on it almost by accident (via slashdot, as I remember). I find it so useful, and fun, that I kept coming back. However, it still seems that the numbers of people who find this site are still relatively small. Publication would open this to people who want to get into Perl who do book searches on the book vendor sites. And I know a lot of people who do that.
- I remember a debate a while ago, about the permanency of data stored on the internet. And, with all the best will in the world, this information stored here is transient. Can you guarantee that in 20 years time, this site will be up? Or that some of the gems that have appeared here will not have been lost/corrupted along the years? Or even be retrievable from backup tapes? Once ideas are committed to book and paper, they endure far more than anything committed soley to electronic media. I firmly believe the discussions held here, and the articles that arise from that have the potential for a book of the highest caliber.
- Books are good. Even though it may be here on the site, I can't read it in bed at night, or take it on vacation with me to browse, or read it on a train to somewhere, or anything like that. I'm much more comfortable with a book than a web page for absorbing information and feeling comfortable. I have a pile of well used books that sit by my terminal all the time, and always will have. They're my real repository of info despite all the online references. Plus, it's easier to have a book open as you work on a screen than to flick between multiple windows.. Well.. Just my thoughts anyway..
I think the idea of a Perl Monk's Bible is just too good an idea to let lie. And although some people have reservations about the way ideas are used for profit, I got the feeling that much of that sentiment was due to the feeling that they would not be contributing to the common good, or that their ideas may somehow not be attributed to them, in effect stolen.
Perhaps this would also make a good poll (Would you be willing to contribute ideas to a Perl Monk's Bible)..
Although, as I mentioned above, princepawn
got to this idea first, I think what I outlined above is significantly different in it's implementation and what it benefits. And it made me wonder if this was more appealing or less to the Perl Monks populace at large, or what would make it more appealing/feasible at all.
Anyhow, enough of my rambling, I'd love to see what arises from this..