in reply to CGI (Perl) vs JSP
JSP itself is an easy system to write code and pages in, it works more or less like PHP or a Templating system for perl. You also have the advantages of easily put logic in external classes, and call those as you are used to. For frameworks that add extra functionality, tapestry might be of interest for instance.
On the other hand, I thought that setting up and configuring the system was a real pain in the behind. Java has some real strange quirks about how it is configured. This might be because I missed something, of course, but if I relate to the ease of installing perl (if it isn't already there), this is a nobrainer. That also includes mod_perl and friends.
JSP seemed like a pain also when building the applications, or pages. Lots of Manifest files and such that needs to be properly configured, although I gather that some tools are available to manage this for you. Again, I might have missed something...
While I wholeheartedly support JSP and Java over MS-technologies like VB, ASP and .NET, I don't really see any benefits over using perl. The above "problems" I mentioned are easily overcome, but I think that perl can do everything JSP can do - I won't judge if any of them are "better" though. I think that is a matter of taste.
On a personal level, I would probably build anything small to medium in perl, possibly with additions of PHP, Java or whatever does the job best at the moment. Anything medium to big, I would probably pick java, with additions of perl etc. This is, even though I do understand the OO ways of perl, and realize that almost anything can be done in perl, I feel more comfortable with complex (business) logic in java. I also feel the tools are way better for such for java, something I hope will be better in perl as time passes. :)
In conclusion, perl is most likely your friend in most cases, and should do the trick with less time, just as fast, and less hassle. Only reason to pick JSP would be to learn - I am very much for learning as many different approaches as possible - if nothing else, it probably makes you a better perl coder because it opens your mind to new ways of doing things.
Good luck with the project, in any case! :)
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