The benefits I've received from leaning new languages on a regular basis are, OS/Language de-mystification, cultural expansion, and wider professional and social acceptance
I tend to agree that with the exception of my foray into Smalltalk most were just exercises in memorizing different semantics. But for the time that I put in I gained back the ability to converse with more people and those people opened many doors that would not have been open to me if I did not at least have a minimally functional understanding of their language of choice.
Every language seems to create a slightly different culture of devotee's around it. Each of these cultures seem to understand the strengths of different aspects of approach to problems. This, more so than the learning the language itself, seems to be the biggest benefit I've received from learning multiple languages.
Probably the easiest way this can be understood is in gaining the understanding of what is "Perlish" and what is "Pythonish".
Looks for lightening to strike....
Just another .02 for the pick a penny
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