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Are you asking about the behavior of <$simple_scalar> versus <$more[$complex]>? That's a readline versus a glob. perlop says:

If what's within the angle brackets is neither a filehandle nor a simple scalar variable containing a filehandle name, typeglob, or typeglob reference, it is interpreted as a filename pattern to be globbed, and either a list of filenames or the next filename in the list is returned, depending on context. This distinction is determined on syntactic grounds alone. That means <$x> is always a readline() from an indirect handle, but <$hash{key}> is always a glob(). That's because $x is a simple scalar variable, but $hash{key} is not--it's a hash element. Even <$x > (note the extra space) is treated as glob("$x ") , not readline($x).

The feature is probably going to go down already recorded in history as one of Perl's warts. :) And the confusion that the angle brackets operator leads to is the primary motivation behind Perl Best Practice's advice to "Use glob, not <...>" (Globbing, page 167).


In reply to Re: strange behavior of indexed list of globs by davido
in thread strange behavior of indexed list of globs by jabowery

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