This notion of "a reference" ("arrayref" is slang for "a reference to an array," etc.) is one of the most-important concepts in Perl. A reference is a single value ... what's called a "scalar" ... yet it can refer to
anything at all. For example, even though arrays are one-dimensional, every slot in it could
consist of a reference to another array, thus creating a n-
dimensional array, and so on. "Contexts" (array, hash, scalar, etc.), as denoted by characters "@", "$", "%" and so on, are also a very important idea.
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