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Perl has always been a language dedicated to getting things done. While many of us (myself included) enjoy the exploration of deeper topics, many who use it are more interested in the result than in the tool used to obtain the result. There's nothing wrong with that. But as you've identified, it might benefit some of those people to hire someone. Nevertheless, one of Perl's strengths is that it is within reach of the "weekend mechanics" of programming. If you need to rebuild a car's transmission you'll probably send that out to a mechanic. But if all you're doing is changing brake pads or even building a go-cart with a lawn mower engine, you might tackle that yourself just because you can. That's one of Perl's strengths; the weekend programmer, non-CS student, sysadmin, biologist, and sales manager can all accomplish a lot with the "baby Perl" subset.

As I attend Perl Mongers meetings, and as I work with clients, it's easy to forget that not everyone is building big web applications sitting on top of database abstractions and powerful frameworks. Not everyone has a release manager, version control, a QA department, unit testing requirements, and all those other things that are common in "the industry." Perl is used within the programming industry, but it's also heavily used just to get things done.

Whether there's money to be had seeking contracts in the bioinformatics industry, I have no idea. I've always thought (perhaps wrongly so) that many of our bioinformatics questions are coming from academia, which is not necessarily a pot of gold.


In reply to Re^3: How can I count the number and kinds of letters at 1st, 2nd and 3rd positions of 3-letter words in a string? by davido
in thread How can I count the number and kinds of letters at 1st, 2nd and 3rd positions of 3-letter words in a string? by supriyoch_2008

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