in reply to Perl VS Python
It's been several years since I've used Perl, so when I went to an Open Source Conference, I decided to attend an "Introduction to Perl for Scripting" for a little bit of a refresher; I came out hoping that it will be several more years before I use Perl.
Python has certain clear advantages over Perl: object-oriented programming is optional, yet when you need it, it's a LOT simpler than in Perl; you don't need to jump through hoops to create advanced data structures based on lists or dictionaries; if you've always indented code like you're supposed to (for readability ;-) ) whitespace comes naturally, with the added bonus that you don't need curly-braces.
Python has disadvantages, too, but the biggest one is that you don't have a powerful macro system that allows you to mold the language to your needs. But then, Python doesn't have that, either. For that power, you need to use Lisp. (This the biggest reason why I decided that I'm going to learn Lisp!)