To me, Perl 6 is like a director's cut
of CPAN. From the RFC process till today, each part of Perl 6 feature either came from, or has been realized, as CPAN modules. (cf. the v6.pm stack diagram
-- much more modules are present in each layer than shown there.)
During the making of Perl 6, what we are doing can be seen as: Take those Perl 5 extensions, which are all nice tools that solves real problems, present them as the default, and make them play well with each other.
Of course, the "play well" part involves a lot of work. However, one thing I like about the v6.pm path is it's gradual and completely opt-in. If you are interested only in some part of Perl 6, use them as CPAN modules today. For the few features that truly needs internals support, simply upgrade to 5.10.
When the CPAN community is reasonably happy with the tool chain, we'll see more CPAN modules written with "use v6-alpha;" as their first line, calling for more integrated internal support in Perl 5.12. When all of it works well together enough that TimToady++ is happy to declare the syntax stable, then it'd be time to drop the "-alpha" suffix. Which wouldn't be this Christmas, but the advent has started now. :-)
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