If I were designing a CS curriculum, I would really concentrate on things such as data types/memory, things that perl really doesn't address, in the freshman year. I think that subsequent years are really the place for things such as perl, when you are more into the algorithmic side and such. Yes, these ARE the pitfalls that many freshmen computer science students fall into, but isn't it better to train them to be well disciplined programs with a strong knowledge of what is going on inside the computer from the start, than to listen to them whine about having to do it later? I can certainly see very strong arguments for teaching freshman programming in perl, for one thing, retention would probably be MUCH higher, and you wouldn't lose the students (mentally). I suppose that it is a VERY good idea in those respects. I have just made a circular argument. I suppose that either way, you are really good to go, but I think that my personal approach to it would be something a bit less abstract in nature. Not that I don't like perl guys.
Just Another Perl Hacker
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