in reply to A Melancholy Monkday
The exact same thing is true of every system that has ever been built in any language: (1) the value of the system is not measured by the “popularity of” the language that it was originally written in, and (2) it will never be rewritten in something else.
Sure, lots of entirely-new projects get started each year, in a situation where there absolutely is a free-choice about what language to use. But I can count the number of those that I have encountered in thirty-plus years on one hand. Nearly all of the time, the work to be done is an extension or an enhancement to an existing (legacy) system. Or, it is an addition to an inventory that already contains hundreds of existing, installed, in-service applications. There is no free-choice here: a company will not sustain the business risk of arbitrarily choosing a new language-platform just because someone says that it is “–er.”
Today’s “sexy world” is strictly a mobile-app one. Schools are churning-out programmers who know how to use the (almost ...) only(!) languages that can be used today for mobile development. Perl does not show up on that radar at all. This should be of no surprise to anyone.
Instead of trying to set your course based on “popularity contests,” choose versatility. Constantly make it your business to learn, or at least to seriously learn about, new programming languages ... never stop doing that. You will learn, not only about what else is going on in our world, but different ways of thinking about the application of computers to problems. Every language, and Perl is certainly no exception, champions not only a particular set of tools, but a particular approach and mind-set. To use a tool effectively, you will think differently. (Or, in the case of Java, you will turn your mind off altogether....) ;-)