It's the 6 vs half dozen argument. I think what makes perl powerful in many situations is the many ways to do it. It makes things possible. The just one way to do thing method in some languages make doing certain tasks near impossible. This makes it easy to learn a one way to do it language, easy to implement, easy to debug and a pain to do anything outside of its box. Perl is flexible, and that means you can do alot with it.
As for winning or losing this is why I am a huge supporter of the concepts in Parrot. If Parrot gets off the ground everyone wins, which means for people who have invested time in different languages they have a common interpreter to use. And for people that need to migrate from one their applications from one language to another they have a platform from which to do the changes by function, object, subroutine without losing the whole thing.
And to me that is where the perl community wins, it sees a need for change and starts out to create a tool for everyone not just the perl community. Because the perl community in general sees perl as one of many tools.
Now I am not a code guru or even big on Parrot or Pugs at all. But this is what the talk in the mailing lists and news groups are selling me, and my play with parrot is beginning to tell me that the perl community has the right idea on this. But time will tell if the right idea will become the right reality.
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