brian's 2011 Perl goals

These are the things that are likely to happen:

  1. A new cpan(1) (the thing from App::cpan and also bundled with version for Perl 5.14. I need to get on that pretty soon, then. :) The current cpan(1) has support for loading alternate config files, and I'd like to also provide a config option that acts as much as possible like cpanm. I think that's probably 90% possible, even if we have to convince to do things slightly separately.

  2. A new edition of Learning Perl. I've been slowly working on that for awhile and keeping track of myself at a blog I use to track its progress. This edition will cover up to Perl 5.14. Our goal is dead trees by OSCON. There will also be an update to the Learning Perl Student Workbook.

  3. A new edition of Intermediate Perl. We're going to drastically update the distribution creation section (not for Dist::Zilla, though, probably, because we're constrained to teaching people how to do things without relying on a tool), some very light Moose stuff, and some better testing stuff. I also want to add a chapter just for regex objects. Most of that is already written, but it's time to let other people see it. Our goal is dead trees by OSCON, just like Learning Perl.

  4. Update a couple of chapters of Mastering Perl. This book probably won't see another dead trees edition, but O'Reilly is game to try some other things, like updates in Safari or PDF updates.

  5. See what Dist::Zilla things I might steal for Module::Release. I'm not a fan of Dist::Zilla only because I don't like any tool that forces me to use that tool, but that are probably some good ideas I can steal anyway.

  6. I've indexed most of BackPAN. Now it's time to make it easier to get and use the data. Some of this goes back to the PAUSE web service that I started at the 2010 Vienna QA workshop.

  7. Keep going with The Effective Perler, the companion website to Effective Perl Programming. We had at least one meaty Perl Item every week, and I might be able to pull that off again.

I haven't thought too much about my conference schedule this year, but I'm interested in spending my conference time budget on some new events or new locations. There are so many Perl events now that I have to stop feeling guilty about picking and choosing. Instead of doing the same events I've done in the past, I want to mostly go to events I haven't attended yet. I need to lighten up the summer too. "Conference season" has become too much of a black hole. I need to reclaim some of that time to get real work done, so I have to pick and choose in June-July-August so I'm not traveling or recovering from traveling for the entire summer.

I've also had to concede that I need to make my conference activities cash neutral. I don't need to come back with more money that I started with, but I can't lose any. I try to do that by teaching classes, whether for the public or for sponsors. I want to work for my sponsorship. That's getting a bit harder since more people are doing that though. :)

  • Frozen Perl in Minneapolis. I'll be teaching Effective Perl Programming the Friday before, and giving the keynote. I've been there before, but it's so close, and it reminds me that it's really not that cold in Chicago (it was -15 C in Minneapolis when I was there on New Years Day).
  • OSCON, which I've done many times, but mostly because I'm on the conference committee and a lot of important people from my primary publisher show up.
  • São Paulo Perl Workshop—I'd never been south of the equator before 2010, but I had separate trips to Buenos Aires and Santiago. Now I want to visit Brazil. Randal has been down there and says they have conference sizes that put almost every other event to shame.
  • YAPC::Asia—I really enjoyed my trip to Tokyo and, so I'd like to try that again. I don't think a class would work out there unless I learn Japanese very quickly. :)
  • London Perl Workshop, because I haven't been to London for awhile and I hear it's really nice in December.
  • YAPC::EU in Riga, I hope, but it's really close to OSCON. I have to be in Europe around then anyway, so I think it's a matter of scheduling and figuring out how to cover the costs.
  • OSDC::AU - There's a solar eclipse with prime viewing in Australia on November 14. If I can stretch out the trip a bit, I might be able to do both.
  • I'll have to check the QA Workshop news because I haven't paid attention to that, but good things always happen there.


I love forward to the Learning series update. I tend to update mine at the same time too. Plus I have a son that is just now talking about programming. :-)

I am curious why they would hold back a dead trees version of "Mastering"?

Please follow common modern perl best practices like
in Learning Perl 6th.

Learning perl 5th(2008) still contains ancient style code
* "Ampersand in Subroutine Calls"
* "Bareword filehandle (type glob), two arguments open"
* "awkward error handling"
if ( ! open LOG, ">>logfile" ) {
die "Cannot create logfile: $!";
* "non-my loop variable"
foreach $person (qw) {
while ( ($key, $value) = each %hash ) {

I taught the Moose class following YAPC::Asia 2009 and at the time I didn't speak more than a few dozen words of Japanese. I just had an interpreter, which was a fun experience. If you're intent on teaching a class in Tokyo you can probably arrange something with @lestrrat. I encourage it! :)

Hey Brian, this seems like a great challenge for the year, really hoping you manage to complete all your tasks.
Looking forward to seeing you at the LPW2011, we are 'currently' a free conference who survive from sponsorship and as such offer everything for free (including workshops) but if you want to run a short (free) workshop we would be most honoured - but it would be good to see you there any way.

Hi brian

The other reason to view an eclipse from Australia is that you'll finally see the sun the right way up - hahahahaha.

Brian, could you instead just include the updated chapters of Mastering Perl as more advanced chapters in Intermediate Perl?

That way, I'd only have to buy two books. :)

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About brian d foy

user-pic I'm the author of Mastering Perl, and the co-author of Learning Perl (6th Edition), Intermediate Perl, Programming Perl (4th Edition) and Effective Perl Programming (2nd Edition).