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NOTE: use Perl; is on undef hiatus. You can read content, but you can't post it. More info will be forthcoming forthcomingly.

All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • The war between PostgreSQL and MySQL continues to rage, which is disappointingly stupid--they should be trying to steal installations from Oracle, just as Perl and Python shouldn't be fighting with each other, they should be taking the battle to C++ and Java.

    The cause of the infighting is obvious. Everyone likes to think they've made the right choice, so everything else must automatically become the wrong choice. This is sad. Personally, I think Java is a fine language -- if you have the right problem space. I once found myself in the position of recommending Java over Perl due to this, but have listened to people be absolutely astonished that I could even think such a thing.

    There is one curious thing I've noticed, though. Most of the really top-notch strong typing advocates that I have talked to seem to think that strong typing is the only way to go. The top-notch dynamic typing advocates that I have talked to admit that both strong and dynamic typing have their place. I suspect that this may be that many people in Perl, Python and Ruby have used strongly typed languages, but not the other way around. I wonder if this is true?

    • Personally, I think Java is a fine language -- if you have the right problem space. I once found myself in the position of recommending Java over Perl due to this, but have listened to people be absolutely astonished that I could even think such a thing.
      I say with no malice or sarcasm: I'd be fascinated to know what this problem space was.
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      You are what you think.
      • No worries, I realize your question was legitimate and while I'm answering at length, don't take that to mean I misunderstood your intent :)

        I won't go into detail about the particular project, but as a general guideline, I think it's fair to say that while Perl can tremendously increase the productivity of individual programmers, Java is still a safer language for many programmers.

        In Java, you have to go out of your way to forget to check whether or not your file access was successful. There's not real

        • Hm.

          I guess there's a certain divergence in philosophy to some degree. "We want it to be easy to produce powerful things" versus "We want it to be hard to really screw up too badly". (I suspect highly that it makes it sound like I'm not an advocate of the second view. Philosophically, I do disagree with it. I suppose it's like the difference between anarchy and "relative policing" -- if you've got only self-restriction, you have a theoretically high freedom to do good things, but there's always some sc

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          You are what you think.
        • Perl is concise and powerful; Java is verbose and safe.
          That's probably the best two-sentence summary of the languages I've read.
      • Just to echo Ovid's points above....

        I was talking about Perl with a hacker who is now managing a well-funded startup. Now that he's a Real Manager, he has to look at everything with conservative glasses.

        If he had a project in mind, had good Perl programmers available, and was reasonably confident that he could find more of them to extend/replace his team, then he'd spec out a project to use Perl. Yes, he'd pay more per programmer and they'd get done faster, but his primary goal is risk mitigation, not