Until PBP, there was not a single Perl book which had focused on writing better standardized code. Most of the books that I have seen are little more than an overview of many subjects and do not go into any depth. A good example of this is Advanced Perl Programming, Second Edition. From the table of Contents, for Template Tools (Chapter 3) it introduces,
- Formats and Text::Autoformat
- Template Toolkit
You have given them 6 options but not much insight into what problem they are going to solve. You could argue that a person should look at them all and make your own decision. On the other side, you have not given the user information on how to develop an application or increase productivity. This sort of material is at best shallow and useless after reading it once. (In comparision, I will go back and look things up again in PBP periodically).
Damian got an overall concensus on his thoughts and solutions from others and wrote a book on it. Damian Conway did a lot of the work but he did not do it alone. The thing that PBP actually provides are real solutions to common problems (example: use Readonly vs. use constants). That is something that other books just don't even address and leave me turned off from even looking at them.
To imply that somehow he has destroyed discussion because of the title and being an authorative figure is being dishonest. There is nothing there that prevents you from writing your own book except your own motivations, skill as a writer and a someone to publish your book.