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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • Here's my theory, which I just *know* you're dying to hear:
    • Advertising. Head to your local bookstore. See the number of Perl and Java books? Now, do you see any Scheme or Smalltalk books? Many people have simply never heard of them, or only heard of them in passing.
    • Difficulty. One can read Learning Perl and have a basic grasp on the language in a very short period of time. I don't think the same can be said of Smalltalk or Scheme, at least not for your average hacker.
    • Syntax. Smalltalk's syntax is
      • Advertising. That's reinforcement not cause - there's a market for books because the languages are widely used.
      • Difficulty.One can read "Smalltalk by Example" [unibe.ch] and have a basic grasp on the language in a very short period of time.
      • Syntax. Smalltalk's syntax is simple, consistent, powerful.
      • Libraries... but I've never heard of them Have you ever looked for them? Smalltalk's rich libraries have been growing since 1980.
      • ROV That's why people switch to Smalltalk - get more done, faster, with fewer people.
      • by ziggy (25) on 2004.09.14 20:33 (#34345) Journal
        One can read "Smalltalk by Example" and have a basic grasp on the language in a very short period of time.
        Hardly. That book is obscure and very hard to find on the bookshelf or at the bookstore. It is freely available online now, but it wasn't 5, 10 or 15 years ago. And freely available materials do not make a programming language easier to use or learn. Some of the best materials about Python have been freely available since the project's inception, yet the size of the Python community is persists at about 1/10th of the size of the Perl community.

        Now that this and other Smalltalk books are freely available and getting more widely advertised (Thanks, Google!) we may see Smalltalk's popularity increase.

        Smalltalk's rich libraries have been growing since 1980.
        Yes, and I think we've pretty firmly established that they are not very well advertised. Again, reinforcement, not cause.