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Re: Perl 6 is too complex

by TheDamian (Priest)
on Mar 15, 2003 at 01:17 UTC ( #243226=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Perl 6 is too complex

Some points:
  • There is no "Good Damian". There is no "Evil Damian". There is just me.
  • There seems to be this notion that the design team is full of excessively smart people who have no ability to weigh the consequences of their ideas. In reality, we find ourselves only just barely smart enough, and sometimes not even that. And we're consumed with unravelling the ramifications of every decision we make. That's one of the reasons each Apocalypse takes so long to produce.
  • Every idea I contribute to Perl is based on a real need that I, or someone I respect, has genuinely experienced in real programming tasks.
  • Look at the many Perl 5 modules that I've written (and that 1000s of people now rely on every day), and then look at what's being added to Perl 6. Notice the correlation?
  • Perl 6 is not taking resources from Perl 5. Since Perl 5 started we've seen the release of 100s of new Perl 5 modules (over a dozen by me alone) as well as Perl 5.8, which is unquestionably the best release of Perl 5 ever.
  • The points that people have made about Apocalypses terrifying and Exegeses mollifying are particularly relevant. No Apocalypse can be fairly judged until the corresponding Exegesis has appeared.
  • Apocalypses are diffs against Perl 5. So they naturally make Perl 6 seem totally different. But about 80% of the existing language is going through unchanged. I wrote an article on that very topic.
  • We are working to reduce the complexity of the language. It's one of our primary goals.
  • Yes, many of the features we're adding have not be hitherto seen in popular mainstream languages. That's precisely why we're adding them. Making advantaged programming techniques accessible to real programmers is a long Perl tradition. For example, earlier releases of Perl have done the same thing with closures, user-accessible symbol tables, tail recursion, tying, user-defined class implementations, dynamic inheritance structures, autoloading, etc. etc.
  • Larry got Perl 1 right. He got Perl 2 right. And Perl 3. And Perl 4. And Perl 5. It's unlikely he's going to screw up -- or allow me to screw up -- Perl 6.
  • That said, we really do appreciate your concerns. And the fact that you are willing to express them publicly, and without resorting to FUD. Such feedback keeps us ever mindful of our goals and responsibilities. Thank-you.

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