Beefy Boxes and Bandwidth Generously Provided by pair Networks
P is for Practical

Laying Your Foundations

by perl.j (Pilgrim)
on Jul 27, 2011 at 13:49 UTC ( [id://917035]=perlmeditation: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

Perl is one of the most useful and powerful programming languages currently known to man. But you cannot just expect to be an expert on it your first day(s). You have to "lay your foundations" before you can build on it. The following are the things that I found most important in my first month of Perl.

Everyone may have different opinions on this, but in my opinion, you must do the following:


1)Find out what the heck you're doing. I learned that you can't just jump right in to ANY programming language. You have to take it slow, start from the beginning. For example, you can't just jump into Mastering Perl content. You have to take it slow. I recommend making sure you read the simpler docs in the The Official Perldocs before you move onto anything else. The Perldocs are great and you have to read them. After you read some Perldocs, go on to the book, Learning Perl. It is specifically made for beginners.

2) Don't just learn Perl to say you learned it. Use it. Perl is actually a very, very useful language (haha, like you don't know). Once you get used to using it, you won't know how you lived without it.

3) Have fun with it. Don't think that programming is boring. If you have that kind of attitude, you will never actually like using it. When you have free time, use it to just make a program. Whether or not you use it after it's made is up to you.

4) TAKE NOTES! I cannot stress this enough. Notes are a valuable learning tool. If you are lazy, and don't like taking notes, the best alternative (although it is not the same, and you may not absorb as much) is The Perl Pocket Reference. It is a great book filled with essentials.

5) Finally, as a wise monk once told me, "You could do worse than to hang out here. Look through some messages you find interesting, see who makes comments that direct you in useful ways, see other things they have posted, particularly if they have attained the highest levels in the monastery."

For those of you who may have noticed, Yes this is on my Home Node :). I hope to add more to this throughout my Perl career.

perl.j-----A Newbie To Perl

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
Re: Laying Your Foundations
by zentara (Archbishop) on Jul 27, 2011 at 16:56 UTC
    Eh, well my strategy thoughout learning Perl, was to play with examples. Then as I needed to learn more, to understand the examples, I would delve into the docs. I say get the big picture first, then get the details as needed. That way it's fun, because you can start using Perl at a pretty high level right away..... sort of like Perl ... the Montessori method, rather than Perl ... Catholic gradeschool method. :-)

    There are many paths to the same destination. I started before google was big, but now with that search engine available, you can learn Perl by just Googling for the right keywords. It will give you alot of sample code to play with, and often explanations better than you will get in any book.

    I'm not really a human, but I play one on earth.
    Old Perl Programmer Haiku ................... flash japh
Re: Laying Your Foundations
by pid (Monk) on Jul 28, 2011 at 06:41 UTC

    Good conclusion.

    Learning Perl is not just learn Perl itself, some other important stuff that worth mention including the culture, the community, and the paradigm you use.
    Perl is whole lot of stuff to learn, level by level. And open wide for the new ideas, no shame in borrowing them.

    Good luck. :)

Re: Laying Your Foundations
by Anonymous Monk on Jul 27, 2011 at 14:11 UTC

    Find out what the heck you're doing.

    This goes just as well for a spell chucker and html validator as for anything :D

Re: Laying Your Foundations
by jdporter (Paladin) on Jul 27, 2011 at 18:46 UTC

    I downvoted you for posting broken HTML which messes up the remainder of the page. Did you really just blow through Preview without noticing, or caring? And you couldn't be bothered to go back and fix it?

      Broken HTML?
      perl.j-----A Newbie To Perl

        Even if your intent was to have most of your post in bold italic, there are still problems with your HTML. And leaving them in a post reminds me of a kid running off with his shoes untied, in his eagerness to play with his friends.

        PerlMonks provides safeguards that I find helpful:

        • Visit Display Settings and make the following settings:
          • Enforce proper nesting of HTML: Checked.
          • HTML Error Reporting Level: 3
          • HTML Error Reporting During Preview: 4
        • Visit User Settings and make the following settings:
          • Turn Hints Off: Unchecked.
          • No Forced Preview: Unchecked.

        With those settings you will see the most common HTML errors identified when you hit preview. Then you will have plenty of opportunity to fix the mistakes before committing your document to public view. Even after it's been posted, you'll continue to see the nag-tags until you've taken the time to edit your post fixing HTML errors.

        In that way, when someone suggests your HTML is broken you will not be unaware or unable to identify where it needs to be fixed.


          A reply falls below the community's threshold of quality. You may see it by logging in.
        Did you intend the majority of your posting to be in bold italics?
Re: Laying Your Foundations
by Lady_Aleena (Priest) on Aug 01, 2011 at 19:35 UTC

    perl.j, I think the consensus is that you should remove the bold tags from your text. I personally don't have a problem with it, however, it looks like some did. Just go through and unbold the paragraphs to make them happy. You can keep the bold on your home node, but please take it out of this node.

    If you want people to continue to read your notions, don't annoy them. :)

    Have a cookie and a very nice day!
    Lady Aleena
Re: Laying Your Foundations
by sundialsvc4 (Abbot) on Aug 02, 2011 at 11:22 UTC

    With the revised formatting, the post is now quite readable, and, quite worth reading.   Thread voted-up.

Log In?

What's my password?
Create A New User
Domain Nodelet?
Node Status?
node history
Node Type: perlmeditation [id://917035]
Approved by chrestomanci
and the web crawler heard nothing...

How do I use this?Last hourOther CB clients
Other Users?
Others learning in the Monastery: (5)
As of 2024-06-13 10:00 GMT
Find Nodes?
    Voting Booth?

    No recent polls found

    erzuuli‥ 🛈The London Perl and Raku Workshop takes place on 26th Oct 2024. If your company depends on Perl, please consider sponsoring and/or attending.