There is another manner by which formatted data can be stored in strings through use of the formline
function which I described in this post
The formline function is normally only used internally, allows for formats to be built and returned in the format output accumulator, $^A. Normally, the contents of this variable are outputted to the currently selected filehandle via the write command, but this variable, $^A, can be read and reset directly.
From the previous node referenced:
my @list = (1, 2);
# the output format can be stored in a variable prior to
my $format = '@<<<< @<<<<';
# format the contents of @list as per the format structure
# defined in the variable $format, the output to be
# stored in the format output accumulator, $^A
formline $format, @list;
print $^A, "\n";
$^A = "";
Thus in this manner, through use of the formline function, both the output format and the subsequent formatted output can be retrieved and stored - This method is advantageous in that it can be employed with older installations of Perl. For further information see formline and perlform.
perl -e 'print+unpack("N",pack("B32","00000000000000000000000111010011")),"\n"'
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