I have been a big Perl fan for many years, but I admit I'm on to Ruby now. Why? Because Ruby 1.8 has many of the features Perl 6 is going to have, but Ruby 1.8 is here NOW, and that makes all the difference in the world.
Also, the implicit comparison of Rails to any old CPAN module is disingenuous. Rails is far more comprehensive than any single CPAN module and far more well integrated than any handful of CPAN modules one might combine to do the same thing.
I miss CPAN, though, for most things that are not Rails. CPAN has far more modules and most of them are more mature of course than their Ruby equivalents. I often come back to Perl so I can get at something I need from CPAN, and when I do, I find now that the core language feels "clunky" compared to Ruby. Maybe when Perl 6 gets here people like me will once again count Perl their favorite language instead of second favorite.
"Dying" may be an exaggeration, but there's no denying that the long development of Perl 6 has cost some mindshare. But that leads to another point - who cares? It's not like Ruby and Perl are competing for market cap or customer dollars. Like I said, I can switch between them at need because I paid zero dollars for both of them.
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