in reply to
A monk in training with a problem
You sound like you are trying to undertake a fairly LARGE and complex problem for someone at our level.
I would recommend shelling out $30 for the llama book.
Being new to perl without any prior programming experience, I found this book to be indespensible.
While this book has very little "orignal technical" material in it, the way the material is presented has been easy for a blockhead such as me to follow.
There are two functions I have found to be invaluable as a newbie:
I always used the strict, I just learned about the diagnostics. This produces wonderfully verbose warning/error messages so I at least know where to begin looking for fixes.
Good luck, I admire your ambition as I have yet to try anything that bold since I started playing with perl. %^)