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Re^3: PERL as shibboleth and the Perl community

by kiat (Vicar)
on Nov 25, 2005 at 15:42 UTC ( #511696=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to Re^2: PERL as shibboleth and the Perl community
in thread PERL as shibboleth and the Perl community

I think Perl is a little unique here. It's an acronym (therefore mistakely written as PERL) as well as being pronounceable, so written as Perl.

A language name like Python doesn't share this uniqueness, in the sense that hardly anyone would write PYTHON. It's not an acronym but the name of an animal. And becuase it's a proper noun, so it's unambiguously written Python.

PHP, on the other hand, is both an acronym and is unpronounceable. Consequently, it's rare to see it written as Php (I think).

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Re^4: PERL as shibboleth and the Perl community
by Perl Mouse (Chaplain) on Nov 25, 2005 at 16:43 UTC
    Perl is not an acronym. The name came first, the words that supposedly make this acronym came later. It's not written "Perl" because it's pronouncable - the name was picked to be a pronouncable word, and one with positive associations ('Gloria' has been a contender for the name of the language, and 'Perl' was almost called 'Pearl' - but it turned out that was already a language with that name (in fact, there are already several languages with the name 'Pearl')).

    PHP on the other hand is an acronym. IIRC, it used to mean "Personal Home Pages", although I think it now stands for something else.

    The fact that Perl is often written as PERL becomes from the 'joke' in the first manual page of Perl (which as survived till today) where the NAME section says:

    perl - Practical Extraction and Report Language
    Perl --((8:>*

      So we're willing to condemn a large number of people to be "not part of the community" just because they fell for a joke in the official perl manpage that doesn't have a smiley or anything to indicate it's a joke?

      I'm sorry, but having the perl manpage say this and perlfaq1 to say something to contradict it, how is this person, who is otherwise completely competent at putting out useful product in perl, supposed to know which one is right, when they don't actually affect his/her perl code?

      It's like going to a lawyer, having the lawyer tell you your shoe is untied, looking down, and having the entire law office break out into laughter at you. You didn't read that manpage looking for a joke. And now the community is laughing at you for falling for it.

      Sorry, that's not just unfair, it's downright rude and condescending.

        Yes, it's true that the Perl community has the tendency to laugh at people who take themselves too seriously. But yikes--please don't think of us as a law office. It seems you've wandered by accident into the comedy club for clowns next door, and we're just all having bozonic amounts of fun pretending to be lawyers. We all plead "Not Gillcup". :-)
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