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Re^13: Perl 6 to be renamed?

by 1nickt (Abbot)
on Aug 28, 2019 at 11:49 UTC ( #11105163=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to Re^12: Perl 6 to be renamed?
in thread Perl 6 to be renamed?

Hi Hauke, I and countless others have written at great length here and all over the place about the actual real-life employment/business effects of the years of Raku interlopers using Perl's name, resources and culture to market itself and muddy the waters for Perl itself. It's a very old, very well-documented story and I'd be surprised if you weren't aware of it.

Update: Here's the most recent article on the topic, by ovid.

As for your question about source, I am weary of rehashing this debate that has already been settled (except, apparently, for here), but I respect you greatly and will point out that I have already posted links and quotes from the Raku discussion that you originally linked to, where Liz M clearly states that the "sister languages" meme was damaging to both languages. She used the word "meme." The admission of damaging effects was new, but she admitted two or three years ago in a Reddit discussion that the "sister language" narrative was a deliberate fiction created to try to ameliorate the fact (which had become apparent to the world by then) that Rake was *not* a new version of Perl. She, mst, jberger and many others have written about the origin of that.

There are thousands of working professional Perl programmers, including me, who have had to live with the confusion that a handful of bored brainy people have sowed, under the blessing of Larry Wall, for almost two decades. I work in a large corporation -- > 3,000 people -- and Perl powers all our core APIs, yet even within the company there's the "Perl is old, good for scripting" perception among managers and IT people who only know what flashes across the Reddit.

People who say Raku is Perl do not make their living as Perl programmers.So yes, it's personal, besides the moral imperative to challenge lies and the ugliness of a cukoo stashing its egg in another bird's nest so it will raise it.


The way forward always starts with a minimal test.

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Re^14: Perl 6 to be renamed?
by haukex (Chancellor) on Aug 29, 2019 at 06:20 UTC
    It's a very old, very well-documented story and I'd be surprised if you weren't aware of it.

    Well, over the past years I've stayed out of the whole "Perl 5 vs. Perl 6" thing, but what I have seen is that it appears to be a quite an emotional issue for some people, which I don't really understand, partially of course because I've stayed out of it. I've only recently paid a bit closer attention because it seems to me like there might be real changes happening soon. But I also don't plan on rehashing or starting another debate.

    I'm just happy that Perl 5 and Perl 6 / Raku are IMHO both great languages, and I don't have a very strong opinion on the naming issue - if it were to stay "Perl 6", that's ok with me, although I also see the advantages of a rename to "Raku". In the end, they're just programming languages, and despite Perl being my favorite for many years, people are free to use whatever language they like. TIMTOWTDI.

    People who say Raku is Perl do not make their living as Perl programmers.

    I do have to say that statement, worded so generally, is most likely not true. So it seems more like rhetoric to me, which is something I don't agree with, and to me it also doesn't jive with the next sentence, in particular "the moral imperative to challenge lies".

    Also, you didn't really answer the actual question I was asking, but it is admittedly somewhat of a personal question, so that's fine of course.

    Anyway, the main point I wanted to make is the following - it's something that I can't tell whether you've taken into consideration. First, I hope you'll agree that it's fair to say that you've used some strong language in your advocacy, sometimes going into personal insults.

    Many of the people working on or using Perl 6 either used to be or still are active Perl 5 users and devs as well. Some people (like myself) really like Perl 6, but still use Perl 5 in their day-to-day tasks. And many of the people working more or less full-time on Perl 6 came from Perl 5. Just to name two symbolic examples, Larry Wall's Perl 6 viv was written in Perl 5, and Rakudo's Configure.pl (among others) is written in Perl 5.

    In other words, these "Perl 6 people" are also "Perl 5 people". They are clearly members of the Perl community, and there's more than just a couple. It follows, then, that personal attacks on Perl 6 and the people working on or with it are also attacks on members of the Perl community. In addition, several of your posts on this topic sounded to me like they have an undertone of "you're not welcome here". <update> I don't mean to come across as trying to defend for other people, some of whom might feel they don't need someone else to defend them. So let me speak for myself: At the very least, it makes me uncomfortable to watch members of the Perl community attack each other in this way, and I imagine I'm not the only one. </update>

    If you want to get a message across, I would suggest that instead of rhetoric, words like "interlopers", "cuckoos", or even harsher insults, which I don't see the necessity for in the first place, constructive criticism and reasoned arguments would get you much further (setting aside for now the question of why one might want to spend so much energy on this in the first place).

    You linked to Ovid's blog post, so let me quote that:

    ... you can try to change their mind, but be aware that when someone strongly disagrees with you, you usually want to start discussion from the points you can agree on and then slowly move to the points on which you disagree. However, that's not been the story of Perl 5/6. People disagree and immediately jump to disagreements rather than trying to find common ground.

    ... Now, despite just having said all that, I want to invite you to a Perl conference, especially if you haven't been to one yet. For example, I plan on being in Amsterdam next August. One of the things I've enjoyed is that it really feels open to everyone, and yes, even the vocal critics of one thing or another ;-) It's been great to get to know more fellow Perl people, and for me it's quickly turned into one of the highlights of the year.

      Hi Hauke,

      Thank you for your reply, thoughtful as always. I've no time at the moment nor do I think it appropriate to rehash here the story of why I feel the way I do about the history of the Raku project and its proponents. I'd love to share with you my experience of all that as a mere working Perl programmer since 1995, and I hope I one day get a chance to do so. I think it would be revelatory for you to hear (which is why you asked++).

      Perhaps that chance will come at a Perl conference. I look forward to there being such things again, having attended my first one in 1998. What I loved most about those days (the Internet was not the instant source of All Knowledge, Nicely Documented that it is now) was that you would go to a conference and learn some real meaty, useful Perl stuff that you would take home and implement. My problem with the "Perl conferences" of recent years is not just that the content is not enough Perl, but that the format makes it impossible to learn anything useful in any depth. 20 minutes for a "standard" talk is just silly IMHO.

      With that in mind I've recently begun working on a regional event here where I live akin to LPW, focussing on Perl teaching and training, like the old YAPCs used to. I'm sure you remember, like I do, the thrill you got when you realized how easy and fun it was going to be implementing your ideas in Perl. (Heck I still feel that thrill most days, how many people are lucky enough to say that after a couple of decades in a career?!) My goal for a Perl conference or any type of event, teaching, mentoring, has always been to open up that feeling to people, whether new programmers or intermediate Perl programmers rising to new levels of competence.

      So perhaps I'll see you at a conference on this side of the Atlantic first :-)

      I must however take issue with your remarks about "insults" and "personal attacks" etc. I've never insulted anyone on the Raku project or attacked them personally. I told Liz she was disingenuous once because I believed she was not being forthright ... maybe you see that as an attack? I have frequently described the Raku project as a "cuckoo" and its proponents as "squatters" because that's what I think their actions are. I do not think that's an insult or an attack, just a statement of what I believe to be the facts. Rhetorical? Sure. I can assure you though that such pithy rhetorical labeling has not always been used by me in the long debate over Raku, and has mostly not been used at all by the many other Perl developers, most better known than me and most less polemic than me, who have believed and believe now as I do.

      And I would urge you to take into consideration the fact that while I've been greatly criticized here for my rhetoric about Raku, including directly by Liz ("why are you so negative, so angry", etc etc), it was Liz the core Raku developer who stood up at the conference you recently attended and delivered a keynote address acknowledging the damage done to Perl by Raku's use of the name and later "sister language" fiction, and it was Liz who used the term "squatting" to describe Raku's continued use of the name "Perl." Doesn't the fact that the group I said was squatting now agrees that they were squatting mean that, I dunno, that I was right? Or that it wasn't just a rhetorical "attack?"

      Peace and best wishes in Perl!


      The way forward always starts with a minimal test.

        Thanks for your reply. I had to think for a bit whether to make this a long point-by-point response, as there are several things in your post that we could dive into further, but instead I'll try to explain myself a little better, I think that's the best I can do for the moment (this kind of post is not my strong suit).

        First off, you are right, I should have checked your posting history more carefully, as it appears I misremembered, for the moment I can't find any overly harsh insults directed at the Perl 6 folks. The ones I was thinking of were actually directed at fellow Monks. And I think trying to judge "how harsh" your other language towards Perl 6 is is probably bikeshedding.

        As you probably know, there are scientific studies that show that emotions and intent are extremely difficult to communicate over the Internet, both on the sending and receiving side. So instead of taking your posting history at face value and trying to pick that apart, let me try to explain how it's being received at my end (and a short response to that). Although like all free advice from strangers on the internet, you're free to ignore it or take it with a grain of salt, perhaps it could also be food for thought on whether this is how you want to be received - I imagine I'm not the only one reading your posts this way.

        If I may simplify what I understand your main problem with Perl 6 / Raku to be, it's that it is drawing various forms of resources away from Perl 5 (marketing, brainpower, etc.). And sure, there are some reasonable arguments to be made there. Personally, I'm currently leaning towards the opinion that a rename might be good.

        But basically, to me, the language you've used in a large percentage of your posts about Perl 6 / Raku expresses clear contempt for Perl 6 and the people working on it, and conveys the message that Perl 6 is completely unwelcome - not just by you, but the language sometimes reads as if you're speaking for others and it's unwelcome in general (even arguing it should be excluded from this website, against the clear statements of the gods).

        As I tried to explain in my previous reply, viewed at a personal level, it's just not that simple. People work on both languages, and people like both languages - as they have the freedom to do. I'm quite confused how you draw the line as to who is a "freeloader", "interloper", "cuckoo", "squatter", and so on, when a fair number of these people are just as much Perl 5 people? Why try to carve off and alienate what is certainly a piece of the Perl community? This is what feels like an "attack": the divisiveness. Is the solution to the "Perl 6 problem" you're advocating to cast people out? (And if not, what is?)

        Now even though I may be completely wrong in the above interpretation of your intent, this is how it's being received here. If there's even a kernel of truth there, you might want to take that into consideration. And on the other hand, if this is exactly how you want to be received, well, then we'd have clarity on that, at least.

        ... a statement of what I believe to be the facts ... I can assure you though that such pithy rhetorical labeling has not always been used by me in the long debate over Raku ... other Perl developers, ... who have believed and believe now as I do.

        Well, if they're beliefs, it's certainly harder to argue against. But if you've been arguing this issue for so long, perhaps you might want to consider whether you've become too entrenched in your position, or if there is maybe too much bitterness there.

        ... mean that, I dunno, that I was right?

        Now you're just gloating :-P But really, if you feel your position has been confirmed, then I don't understand why you continue to be, as you say, "polemic" about it. Even the little bits in your posts like "... a Perl conference. I look forward to there being such things again..." at least appear to me to be carefully crafted language deriding the current Perl (5 and 6) conferences, but I don't see the need for it - it shows your bias and it's not appreciated by your target audience, thus reducing the effectiveness of the communication.

        (And again, if I'm wrong here, then that is the unfortunate nature of Internet communication.)

        ... the story of why I feel the way I do about the history of the Raku project and its proponents. I'd love to share with you my experience of all that as a mere working Perl programmer since 1995, and I hope I one day get a chance to do so. I think it would be revelatory for you to hear (which is why you asked++).

        Yes, as before I'm still curious, I think it'd be enlightening to hear the backstory. I've considered going to YAPC::NA, but I'm yet not sure when I might get to do that. But my invitation to YAPC::EU still stands, of course!

Re^14: Perl 6 to be renamed?
by jdporter (Canon) on Aug 28, 2019 at 19:09 UTC

    Thing is, none of that has any material bearing on whether discussion of this other "Perl-influenced" language should be allowed here.
    What haukex should have asked is: What negative impact has any P6 discussion on perlmonks had on you? (That is, just discussions of P6 itself or programming questions in that language, not meta-discussions like the present one.)
    If P6 questions/meditations bother you, scroll past.

      What haukex should have asked is: What negative impact has any P6 discussion on perlmonks had on you?

      To play the devil's advocate for a second, I imagine a response to that could be that continuing to mix Perl 5 and 6 continues to spread "confusion" about the two languages. (Which I disagree with.)

      No, I really did mean to ask the question the way I did :-)

        I really did mean to ask the question the way I did

        I wasn't suggesting that you asked a question other than what you meant. I just think that the question as I posed it would have been much more relevant to the topic of whether P6 discussion should be allowed here at pm.

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