Remember: the value of $/ is a string, not a regex. awk has to be better for something. :-)
I suspect this not allowing a regex in Perl's record separtor $/
variable was the source of the famous
Larry Wall quote
Hey, I had to let awk be better at *something*... :-)
Seriously, I've used both awk and Perl extensively over the years, and I'd say Perl wins easily for just about everything. Perhaps most tellingly, Perl scales better as programs tend to naturally grow larger over the years (as I similarly argued against Unix shell in Unix shell versus Perl). By all means compare Perl with Ruby and Python, but not awk: it's no contest.