in reply to Syntax for casting map to a hash or an array

Is there a reference dereference happening?

Yes - the curlies directly around the map create a hash reference from the list that map returns (see number 3 in Making References), and then the outer %{ } dereferences that hash reference (see number 2 in Using References).

So the inner pair is a code block.

Nope, it's a hashref constructor, but since it can also look like a block, Perl sometimes has to "guess" which one it is, and AFAIK that's where the warning is coming from.

If I need to return an array, as opposed to a list or a hash, what would that syntax be?

The same kind of reference-dereference operation, just in this case create an arrayref with [...] and dereference it with @{...}:

print Dumper @{ [ map {"<$_>"} qw/a b c/ ] }; __END__ $VAR1 = '<a>'; $VAR2 = '<b>'; $VAR3 = '<c>';

Although I think this is needed less often than the %{{...}} trick when it comes to passing stuff to functions, since most functions impose list context on their arguments anyway. However, it is sometimes used as a trick to interpolate things into strings that don't normally interpolate, so for example:

sub foo { return "World!" } print "Hello, ", foo(), "\n"; # prints "Hello, World!" print "Hello, foo()!\n"; # prints "Hello, foo()!" print "Hello, @{[ foo() ]}\n"; # prints "Hello, World!"

While in this example the first print looks cleaner than the last, the trick can sometimes be useful when interpolating things into long heredocs, for example.