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Ovid (2709)

Ovid
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Stuff with the Perl Foundation. A couple of patches in the Perl core. A few CPAN modules. That about sums it up.

Journal of Ovid (2709)

Wednesday July 06, 2005
02:06 PM

What I want instead of Dr. Dobb's

[ #25550 ]

A few months ago, I received some mail from Dr. Dobb's Journal informing me that I qualified for a free subscription. Unlike some of the other free rags out there, Dr. Dobb's seemed genuinely useful, so I accepted. The first issue I received was Java only. The issue I am looking at now covers Java, C, C++, C# and .NET. So for casual free reading, it's OK, but it really doesn't have much impact on what I do. Even though I know Java and C, I really don't give a damn about them.

What about the Perl Journal? Well, the last time I paid for a subscription, I received one copy and the magazine folded. I never received a refund and frankly, I was pissed. In its current incarnation, I've seen one issue and never got around to getting a subscription. Now, however, I think I know why. While I should probably subscribe simply because this is my field, it's too narrow for me (though I hear the articles are good).

Even though Dr. Dobb's is not narrow (it's even had articles on Prolog), it's largely useless to me due to its understandably heavy focus on languages with "market share". Despite that, there are times when it has fantastic articles that really pique my curiosity. I just want it to be more consistently relevant to me. What I want is a magazine like Dr. Dobb's that focuses primarily in dynamic programming languages.

Imagine a "Dynamic Languages Journal" which focuses on Perl, Python, PHP, Javascript, Ruby, etc. It has an "Exotic Languages" corner which has introductory articles on Prolog, Squeek, Haskell and similar beasts. Exciting new developments like Open JSAN can be covered and has columns covering the philosophical discussions that some love and others hate. That's what I would subscribe to in a heartbeat. Further, by having a professionally produced magazine like that, it would even further drive the "respectability" of the powerful tools that we appreciate even if outsiders don't.

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  • Interesting idea!

    I agree; it's almost a waste of time to trudge through Software Development or Dr. Dobb's Journal.

    I'm finding some interesting stuff in the new Web-only incarnation of The Perl Journal. I'm seeing new articles by Simon Cozens.

    Do you get The Perl Review? brian d foy is doing some great things as its editor and publisher.

    I wonder why a company like ActiveState hasn't tried your Dynamic Languages Journal idea?

  • I'd definitely read that. I have no interest in programming in Python or (blech) PHP, but it'd be good to see what's happening in those languages, as a nice source for ideas to steal ;)
  • I think you'll just have to be a content producer rather than a consumer. I'd love to have an AI::Prolog article for The Perl Review [theperlreview.com]. :)

    Other than that, I've been trying to talk some other people into starting the sort of magazine that you want (I'd publish it), but there aren't that many people withthe subject matter expertise who want to edit a magazine. If anyone is interested, please let me know. I've already paid the sunk costs. :)
    • Well, I just posted this to the Lambda the Ultimate [lambda-the-ultimate.org] forum. You might get a few takers there.

      I've wanted to write an AI::Prolog article. The main obstacle being that I'd have to teach some Prolog to show how it works. Even though Prolog is easy to learn, that could make for a loooooooong article.

    • I just dropped you an email about this, but I figured I'd mention it here just in case others were waiting for one person to jump up before getting involved.

      I'd also love to see such a magazine, and I'm interested in helping out, either as an editor or a writer.

      I've got a little experience in this sort of thing (a few O'ReillyNet articles and a book for APress), and I try to keep up to date with what's happening in a few of the different development communities, so this sort of thing certainly interest

    • count me in as another interested party, definitely on the reading side and possibly on the writing side.
  • Imagine a "Dynamic Languages Journal" which focuses on Perl, Python, PHP, Javascript, Ruby, etc. It has an "Exotic Languages" corner which has introductory articles on Prolog, Squeek, Haskell and similar beasts.

    I'd buy that for a dollar (or even multiples of said currency :-)

    I don't know if its just my imagination but I seem to be having fewer arguments of the "Lisp/Smalltalk/Perl/Ruby is completely useless for real world work, you should be using C/Java/C++/C#/C" variety over the last couple of ye

  • I could have sworn I blogged about a very similar idea, but maybe I just talked about it with a friend. Anyway, I definitely think it's a good idea.

    Hmm....my mom just gave me a magazine on venture capital firms...

  • Yes, you could call it Eval the Penultimate: don't you just wish you were smart enough to grok LtU [lambda-the-ultimate.org]