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cpan module; download count

by sathiya.sw (Monk)
on Nov 21, 2008 at 10:35 UTC ( #725087=perlquestion: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??
sathiya.sw has asked for the wisdom of the Perl Monks concerning the following question:

hi monks,

How to find a perl module download count in CPAN ?

Because if there are more than one module for the same purpose, then we can use that as an input to select a module.

( forgive me, if i am posting this wrongly here ), i think i would get better ideas over here, so posting this here.

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
Re: cpan module; download count
by moritz (Cardinal) on Nov 21, 2008 at 10:39 UTC
    You won't get a download count for various reasons, one of them being that CPAN is a distributed network of download mirrors, which aren't under a common administrative control.

    Another reason is that popularity is often a bad quality measure (see PHP :-).

    Instead read the thread How to pick a CPAN module, it has some interesting thoughts on your underlying question.

      Great, and that is a great post which tells me what i want.

Re: cpan module; download count
by JavaFan (Canon) on Nov 21, 2008 at 10:53 UTC
    Because if there are more than one module for the same purpose, then we can use that as an input to select a module.
    Really? Here are a couple of reasons why it's a bad selector. Assume there are CPAN modules G and B doing the same thing, G in a good way, B in a bad way.
    1. If B has been there longer than G, the download count will be higher. If people use download count to determine what to download, people will download B, increasing its count.
    2. The author of B may do a lot of propaganda on Perlmonks and elsewhere, while the author of G doesn't give a rats ass how many people use his/her module.
    3. If a popular module P has a dependency on B, it will increase the download count on B.
    4. Redhat knows that G is good and B is bad. So it includes G in its distribution. Other vendors follow suit. Hence, large numbers of users of G actually never download G, not contributing to its download count.
    5. People that actually decide for themselves download B and G anyway.

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