I'm a little bit saddened by the firm dismissal of (another) anonymonk. Quoted wikipedia interpretation is so broad it's borderline meaningless. But when a more specific definition is put forth, it is rejected.
The book you refer to ("97 Things Every Programmer Should Know") draws on many programmers' meditations. Quoted from the preface:
The contributions do not dovetail like modular parts, and there is no intent that they should—if anything, the opposite is true. The value of each contribution comes from its distinctiveness. The value of the collection lies in how the contributions complement, confirm, and even contradict one another.
Eyepops, your appeal to authority is bogus. There is no one best way here.
Long variable names themselves may induce cognitive load. The second suggested construct that uses values, might also increase cognitive load—for a perl novice—as it involves the concept of aliasing.
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