We are all Perl's ambassadors...

I wonder how many newbies in the whole history of Perl had their "llama" arrive from Amazon and shortly thereafter—in a fever pitch of excitement—managed to create a distribution they thought was the best thing since sliced bread and upload it to CPAN only to have their debut into our wonderful, loving community met by a CPAN rater. After which, naturally, they slowly backed out of the room, closed the door behind them, picked up their (PHP|Ruby|Python|Javascript) book and never coded a line of perl again...

Surely, no one can say but maybe—just maybe—we'd be better off with a system similar to Stack Overflow where a user has to have a certain number of points or special kind of badge (e.g. the Teacher, Ambassador, the "Empathy Lieutenant", the "brian d foy", etc) in order to leave a rating on someone's first distribution.

I dunno. It's worth a thought, because this whole thing just made me cringe...

Is it possible to run Movable Type under Apache HTTP Server?

That was the question posted to Quora which seemed strange to me given that Apache is the web server most used by MT end users, developers and even (to my knowledge) every single core developer who has even worked on MT. Not to mention the rest of the world! I'd love to know what spurred on the question and what web server people generally use in the author's world.

Anyhow, the reason I'm writing is mainly because the REST of my answer which is a rant about still-persistent use of CGI by some administrators/developers. *facepalm*

My answer, after the jump, just in case Quora goes the the bit graveyard one day...

Filtering CPAN results by release date

When is the last time you used a CPAN distribution whose last release date was more than five years ago? I don't mean just in hacking around or for research purposes. I'm talking about something that mattered, that lived somewhere other than your development machine and could be seen/used by other people. Even if you have an answer for me, it's certainly going to be the single exception to a vastly superior rule, no?

For the vast majority of my searches, I really couldn't give a fluff about anything last released in 2007 or earlier. I'm not advocating removal or anything (or am I?) but the language and its developers move on. Shouldn't CPAN?

I can’t be the only one to think that it would be a HUGE and immediate benefit to every single developer in the Perl community (new or ninja) to be able to filter any CPAN search based on the latest release date of a distribution (or the parent distribution in the case of a module). Am I crazy? Why hasn't this been done?

If it hasn't and someone doesn't do it before I'm finished with my current project, I'm going to sit down and see about finally figuring out the MetaCPAN API. It looks incredibly powerful (certainly powerful enough to handle something like this) but I have a limited space in my brain reserved for search syntaxes and that's all used up by perlre and Google.

Oh to be able to use perl regular expressions and Google search operators into MetaCPAN's search box... Now there's a search engine I'd like to use...

name:({Class Package Module Object} -^(Devel|Acme))        \
nsexclude:{Devel Acme}                                     \
distupdate:"after 2009"                                    \
abstract:(accessor mutator data config)                    \
-cpanauthor:billg                                          \
-depends:{M(o|oo|ouse|oose) Catalyst Dancer Mojolicious}

What programming languages should a beginner learn?

On Quora: From the following programming languages, in which order should a beginner learn them?:

HTML, CSS, Python, Ruby, PHP, Asp.net, C++, Flash, Javascript, SQL

Granted the question said nothing about Perl but then neither did a single answer even mention it as an addition. This makes Sad Panda sad.

Hello (Perl) World!

What an odd thing to write... I've been developing software in one way or another for about 30 years and Perl has been my primary language since around 1993. And yet I don't have a single CPAN module to my name and haven't really been involved in the community at all other than thanking the stars that it exists and produces such fantastic things.

So, I suppose, consider this my hello.

Interestingly, I find myself being pulled more and more strongly into the vortex because of my involvement as one of the core developers of Melody. As great as Movable Type has been (and as proud as I am that it's being used here on blogs.perl.org), it's a mess of years-on-years of internally-focused development. With Melody, we're trying to unwind the mess (without unwinding the features) so that we can continue to make it even better in a far more efficient and community-driven way.

The problem is all I seem to be doing is refactoring and fixing bugs from other people's refactoring. And as much as I was confident of my perl skills before I am now completely aware of my shortcomings. I've been looking for a place to talk about these things where people would understand and, perhaps, even be able to help.

So that's what you can expect from me here. I hope it's enjoyable or enlightening in some way for you readers. For me, it will probably be more catharsis than anything else. Sweet, perl catharsis...

About Jay Allen

user-pic Long-time perl and Movable Type developer. Principal of Endevver (http://endevver.com). Former MT Product Manager at Six Apart. Co-founder and Board Member of the Open Melody Software Group (http://openmelody.org)