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Perl and Open Source in General

by Kevin_Raymer
on Feb 16, 2007 at 17:10 UTC ( #600477=perlmeditation: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??

I would first like to thank everyone that has helped me with the code I am trying to hack. It is still not working but I am making a lot of progress. I realized today that Perl is "open source" I thought it was strange but now I know why it does not come with any version of Windows.

Does this snub from Microsoft give PERL less credibilty than other software that is enterprise class like WORD or INTERNET EXPLORER?

I must say I have found PERL to be pretty hard to use. I am a serious hacker with 22 years experiance in IT. Most of those years were spent hacking. If PERL is indeed already installed on a system..like it was on mine (and I didn't even know) shouldn't they make it more obvious that its on there? I consider myself pretty computer technical..AOL, Earthlink, EV1 and I know Powerpoint also..So I am no slouch.

I guess what I am trying to say is if someone has tech as me has trouble with PERL what does that average Joe experiance when trying to hack code?

Thanks again for all the help I am still working on getting this going - Just throwing this out for discussion. Also lots of really technical people in my hometown have never even heard of PERL!

KR

Comment on Perl and Open Source in General
Re: Perl and Open Source in General
by blazar (Canon) on Feb 16, 2007 at 17:20 UTC
    would first like to thank everyone that has helped me with the code I am trying to hack. It is still not working but I am making a lot of progress. I realized today that Perl is "open source" I thought it was strange but now I know why it does not come with any version of Windows.

    It does not come with any version of Windows, because it's not Microsoft software, not because it's open source, period. OTOH there's at least one piece of Windows documentation where Perl is mentioned as a topical example: not terribly relevant, but just to let you know...

    Anyway there are quite a lot of programming languages which do not ship with any version of Windows, wheter open source or not. Indeed the average Windows user won't need a programming language in any case. (FWIW Microsoft produces and sells compilers and/or development tools for several languages, IIRC there are even free versions -as in "free beer"- of some. Yet they're not distribuited with Windows.) For those who want one, it will generally be a few clicks away. In the case of Perl, the easiest and most common choice will be ActiveState's ActivePerl.

    Does this snub from Microsoft give PERL less credibilty than other software that is enterprise class like WORD or INTERNET EXPLORER?

    Not at all! Word is a respectable program and all, for some applications. But it is a very poor tool, nay fundamentally a toy one, for those who are in the know of good typesetting and document managing. Thus is has popularity, but no credibilty. OTOH there are good alternatives which are also free in the widest sense of the word and more or less open source, like TeX & C.

    BTW: it has already been told you, but there's not such a thing as "PERL": as you can see from that link itself, the use of an all uppercase "PERL" is a means in the community to distinguish who's in the know from who's not. As usual the best explanation is the one that ships with perl: check perldoc -q difference between "perl" and "Perl".

    I must say I have found PERL to be pretty hard to use. I am a serious hacker with 22 years experiance in IT. Most of those years were spent hacking. If PERL is indeed already installed on a system..like it was on mine (and I didn't even know) shouldn't they make it more obvious that its on there? I consider myself pretty computer technical..AOL, Earthlink, EV1 and I know Powerpoint also..So I am no slouch.

    Please do not take it as a personal offense, but despite your repeated boasting about having "22 years experiance in IT", evidence is that your experience has been in just some limited areas: all those things that you mention -AOL, Earthlink, EV1, Powerpoint- are by no means the whole world. More precisely they comprise a very small portion of the (IT) world.

    I'll try to clarify with an example: I think I'm a pretty decent judoka with several years of experience in this sense. Yet I can't play basketball. I can't even dribble the ball, and apart the fact that I know that the ball has to be thrown in the basket to score some points, I ignore the rules. Now, basketball for me is like "PERL" for you. No matter how much experience I have with some other sports, I can't play basketball. BTW: it's not "my" sport and I could never make a decent let alone a mediocre player. But I could at least study the rules. You ignore the very basic "rules" of Perl, nay, evidence is that you hardly get what Perl really is. So it's not surprising that you find it "to be pretty hard to use".

    So my piece of advice is: forget about your 22 years worth of experience: you will have to start learning anew something different from what you already know. Also, 22 years mean nothing a priori: given her age, Audrey Tang can hardly have that many years of programming experience. Yet she's a much better hacker than many older programmers with longer lasting programming careers, and when I think of her I doubt I will ever be such an extraordinaire one! It's quality that matters, not quantity!

    I guess what I am trying to say is if someone has tech as me has trouble with PERL what does that average Joe experiance when trying to hack code?

    I don't know if I'm as tech as you, but Perl was a natural pick for me. However I had some previous experience with other programming languages, although none of them really "caught" me as much as Perl.

    Thanks again for all the help I am still working on getting this going - Just throwing this out for discussion. Also lots of really technical people in my hometown have never even heard of PERL!

    As the funny anecdote derby reported in another thread of yours shows, many people regard themselves and are possibly even regarded as "technical" without really being, or being only in some limited sense. You can by no means be an expert in "everything". I guess I'm a pretty "technical guy" in some application areas but I have no experience with videogames and only limited sysadmin skills and know-how, for example. Also, it's not surprising at all that they haven't ever heard about Perl! There are quite a lot of other programming languages actively used, not to mention abandoned ones that are still of historical interest: do they know "all" the other ones?!?

Re: Perl and Open Source in General
by ikegami (Pope) on Feb 16, 2007 at 17:36 UTC

    I thought it was strange but now I know why it does not come with any version of Windows.

    MS doesn't bundle any third-party app with Windows. It would be obligated to support an application outside of its control if it did.

    Does this snub from Microsoft give PERL less credibilty than other software that is enterprise class like WORD or INTERNET EXPLORER?

    Funny you should mention Word. Word doesn't come with Windows. Are you saying that MS is snubbing Word too?

    I guess what I am trying to say is if someone has tech as me has trouble with PERL what does that average Joe experiance when trying to hack code?

    You successfully got Perl running with little effort. Sounds like you did great! On the second day, you even wrote a little program. Awesome! I'd say that's very good for someone who has a awful grasp of the basics. What are you complaining about?

Re: Perl and Open Source in General
by zentara (Archbishop) on Feb 16, 2007 at 17:48 UTC
    if someone has tech as me has trouble with PERL what does that average Joe experiance when trying to hack code

    I've read your questions, and I think your problem is you thought you could just jump right into Perl, and use your previous knowledge to figure it out as you go. You would have been far happier, if you read a couple of the free books and/or tutorials first. Perl is closer to c, than any other language I've seen, it's not like batch files at all. You are thinking like a bash shell ( linux equivalent of dos shell) programmer. Perl goes a level deeper than that.

    P.S. Perl is very sensitive to spelling, punctuation, and capitalization. From your posts, you seem to be having trouble with those things. When doing your Perl programs, always put "use warnings"; at the beginning of your script, to help you catch all the typos, before you start blaming Perl.


    I'm not really a human, but I play one on earth. Cogito ergo sum a bum
      Perl is closer to c, than any other language I've seen, it's not like batch files at all.

      C++, Objective-C, C--, Java, JavaScript... ok, it's just a start, who wants to take on?

        I don't get what you are trying to say? Are you saying that Perl is closer to JavaScript( or Java), than c? Even c is closer to Perl than c++, unless you make a case for the Object Oriented aspects.

        I'm not really a human, but I play one on earth. Cogito ergo sum a bum
Reaped: *DUP* Re: Perl and Open Source in General
by NodeReaper (Curate) on Feb 16, 2007 at 17:49 UTC
Re: Perl and Open Source in General
by rhesa (Vicar) on Feb 16, 2007 at 19:05 UTC
    I seem to remember that Windows NT 3.5 came with Perl pre-installed (version 3 I think). But yes, Perl isn't a Microsoft product.

      I want to say it was on the official unofficial tools CD with the NT Resource kit, not actually in the OS installation. If you search for Perl in Amazon's copy of the NT4 Workstation version you'll see oblique mention that it's on the CD. So yeah, they did provide copies.</pedant>

Re: Perl and Open Source in General
by andyford (Curate) on Feb 16, 2007 at 19:14 UTC

    Think of it this way: You're not trying to master something like Word, you're beginning to learn how to use a tool that could be used to create Word.

    non-Perl: Andy Ford

Re: Perl and Open Source in General
by derby (Abbot) on Feb 16, 2007 at 23:19 UTC

    KR you're a hoot. I think you need to add "and I know SCO Unix" to your skill set ... I'm amazed the monk fishies are still feeding on your troll bait.

    -derby
Re: Perl and Open Source in General
by Steve_p (Priest) on Feb 17, 2007 at 02:49 UTC
    Does this snub from Microsoft give PERL less credibilty than other software that is enterprise class like WORD or INTERNET EXPLORER?

    Well, actually, Microsoft helped to fund the initial work to bring Perl to Windows. They also distributed it with their Windows NT Resource kits. In fact, rather than speak for Microsoft, you can see their opinion here.

    Oddly, enough though, Microsoft never distributes Word with any version of Windows I've seen at a store. Maybe I shouldn't use Word either.

    ;-)


    Test your modules with bleadperl!

      rsync -avz rsync://public.activestate.com/perl-current/ .
      ./Configure -des -Dusedevel -Dprefix=/path/to/test/perl
      make test
      make install
    

    Now, please test you modules! If you have test failures that don't happen with Perl 5.8.8, send a simplified test case to

    perlbug at perl.org

Re: Perl and Open Source in General
by Mr. Muskrat (Abbot) on Feb 20, 2007 at 15:18 UTC
    "Also lots of really technical people in my hometown have never even heard of PERL!"
    Wait! Let me take a guess here. You're from Tuttle, right?
Re: Perl and Open Source in General
by Anonymous Monk on Feb 20, 2007 at 17:07 UTC
    "I must say I have found PERL to be pretty hard to use. I am a serious hacker with 22 years experiance in IT."

    DOOD! I'm right there with ya! I have 98 yeats of experiance in IT and over 500 degrees!

    But I can program the shit out of some PERL!

    We shoudl get together and throw rocks at people sometime!

    2007-02-24 Considered by gregor42: reap: troll food
    2007-02-27 Unconsidered by Arunbear: enough keep votes {Keep: 10, Edit: 0, Reap: 19}

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