Bretheren of Perl,
When I first learned Perl, it was Perl 4. Perl 5 was available, but it was new, and the company I was working for didn't trust it yet. That was many years ago, at the first job I had after college. In the time since, I've used Perl to varying degrees at every job I've ever had. I still work with Perl 5 today, and I expect this will be how I continue to make my living for years to come.
Some months ago, I shifted my free time expenditures from the Monastery to contributing to Perl 6. At the time, I'd heard there were some Perl 5 folks none too happy with Perl 6, but I was really only dimly aware of this and even further oblivious to the reasons involved.
I found the Perl 6 community to be friendly, welcoming, helpful, and all the other wonderful things I'd come to expect from my experience here at the Monastery. I basically forgot about any rift between the Perl 5 and Perl 6 communities. As I had experienced them, I saw no reason for them not to get along.
My eyes have been opened by masak and mst, who had a long private conversation on this topic and revealed the results of it in two articles.
I think the Perl community would benefit from taking these to heart. If you find yourself lacking the time to read the illuminations within them, mst has prepared a very brief summary, which I will summarize further.
Perl 5 and Perl 6 are two separate languages in the same family. I can tell you from my own experience that the fine folks working on Perl 6 do not plot the demise of Perl 5. I can also tell you that Perl 6 is clearly a different language from Perl 5 and just as clearly came from the same place. They were made with the same ideas in mind. Long may they live with our love and dedication.
Peace to you, Perl users everywhere.