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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • Method chaining is fine as long as it's clearly documented and consistent within a module. I would be hauled off to the looney bin if I were to make any kind of global recommendation, however.

    In my new Alpaca book [], I argue that for a getter/setter method, there are arguments in favor of any one of four return values from the setter method:

    • a simple true/false status (yes I was able to set this),
    • the newly set value, turning the setter into an immediate getter as well,
    • the previous value (ala umask and single-arg select), allowing flip-flop settings trivially, or
    • the object itself, allowing for chained settings.
    For anything but the first, a die has to be used to signal error.

    As long as it's documented, it's fine. Don't demand consistency. Any one of these four returns is fine.

    • Randal L. Schwartz
    • Stonehenge