Whats wrong with the Perl Community?

Hi There,

this is my first post here. I never thought about blogging here, because i just didn't felt to do so. But the last weeks made me to think over this.

More and more i read negative stuff about Perl coming from the people using Perl. This irritates me. On the one side, i think it's a good characteristic to be critical about what you use, what you love and the tools you use. On the other side, i don't really understand why we keep to propagate the bad things about Perl and the economy around it all the time here in public?

If we wanted to attract new programmers to do some Perl coding, they probably don't want to read about all the quirks that exist. They want to read about cool stuff thats possible with Perl, success stories and the like.

So i would love to read more entries which are written in a more positive way than always complaining about stuff that doesn't work.

At least that's one of the key things, that do languages like Python or Ruby better - if you ask me. They don't tell you whats bad about them, they just show you how awesome they are. The trained engineer thinks "ah come on, stop bullshitting me with this useless examples" but the novice programmer likes to see this kind of fancy stuff.

Just my 2 cents. :)



"Python or Ruby better [...] They don't tell you whats bad about them"

No, you have to discover that for yourself several months down the line. :-)

Perl does have its problems (byzantine implementation internals; syntax warts maintained for backcompat; overly complex toolchain; and slow progress on the project everybody hoped would wipe all those slates clean). But if we pretend they don't exist, they'll never get fixed.

OK, so we could conduct all such discussions in private, but the Perl community in general prefers not to do cabals. With some exceptions :-).

There does seem to be a fashion lately of Perl Famous people racing to be the most critical of Perl 5.

I follow lots of Perl blogs and I'm surprised you feel the discussion has been negative, or that folks have been saying negative things about Perl.

What I've seen are people who are passionate about our favorite programming language struggling with some great ideas on how to push Perl 5 forward in the face of the issues Tony Inkster listed. It's a hard problem so there needs to be (and there has been) a lot of back and forth, push and pull going on.

I would characterize the discussion as "Perlish" rather than negative.

Hi, Just my two cents, in addition to what everyone here said: I think we can derive a lot of value from people who say negative things (even if it's destructive criticism), because it may tell us where we should improve. See what Lawrence Lessig wrote about it in his book Remix (which you can download and read from the Internet free-of-charge and which is highly enjoyable).

I do it because I want perl to be Awesome.

At the risk of being repetitive (as in repeating other commenters), could you tell me which particular blog post(s)/comment(s) you view as containing "negative stuffs about Perl from the Perl community"?

Because all I've read so far are things along the line of "X sucks/has problems, and here's how I think it could be solved." Perl community, as always, are searching for solutions to their problems.

I'm seriously asking. I might be biased after all.

Your presumption about other languages is incorrect; the issue is not about chosen language, it's about humans.


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About Sven Eppler

user-pic I blog about Perl because i love Perl!