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Home: Perl Programming Help: Beginner:
Why use Perl?

 



theboyholty
New User

May 6, 2011, 10:33 AM

Post #1 of 9 (1435 views)
Why use Perl? Can't Post

Kind of a down to basics question this, but I'm a part time PHP developer who uses a bit of Javascript and I'm considering adding Perl to my CV.

So why would I need to learn Perl? What can it do that, say, PHP or Javascript can't? What are the benefits of programming in Perl?

I've looked at a few tutorials and it doesn't look too complicated, so I'm wondering if its worth spending the time learning it. How will it enhance my CV?

In short, I want you to sell it to me.

Looking forward to your replies.

Thanks, Nick.


miller
User

May 6, 2011, 7:21 PM

Post #2 of 9 (1425 views)
Re: [theboyholty] Why use Perl? [In reply to] Can't Post

Why use perl? Because you love it.

Sorry mate, don't really have time to sell it to ya.

- Miller


crow
New User


May 7, 2011, 5:26 AM

Post #3 of 9 (1409 views)
Re: [theboyholty] Why use Perl? [In reply to] Can't Post

spend sometime looking here http://www.perl.org/


theboyholty
New User

May 8, 2011, 2:47 AM

Post #4 of 9 (1393 views)
Re: [crow] Why use Perl? [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks for the link, I've spent a bit of time on there already but what I wanted to know was why do YOU prefer it. I can't see anything that Perl can do that PHP can't.

The previous chap said its because you love it. Why do you love it? What's special about it? Is it because its less popular? Would you say its a bit of a cult programming language?


FishMonger
Veteran / Moderator

May 8, 2011, 7:18 AM

Post #5 of 9 (1388 views)
Re: [theboyholty] Why use Perl? [In reply to] Can't Post

Trolling for a flamewar are we?

If you need someone to convince you to use it, then it's not the right language for you.

Take your trolling elsewhere please.


theboyholty
New User

May 8, 2011, 8:19 AM

Post #6 of 9 (1386 views)
Re: [FishMonger] Why use Perl? [In reply to] Can't Post

Not looking for an argument at all, but no-one's said a single thing yet that makes me want to go to the trouble of learning it. I come in peace, honestly.


FishMonger
Veteran / Moderator

May 8, 2011, 10:43 AM

Post #7 of 9 (1381 views)
Re: [theboyholty] Why use Perl? [In reply to] Can't Post


Quote
I can't see anything that Perl can do that PHP can't.

That's a pretty bold statement to say when you don't know Perl and are asking us to convince you to learn it.


Quote
Is it because its less popular? Would you say its a bit of a cult programming language?

I've ony seen questions (statements) like those and your other statements when someone is trolling.

The Perl vs PHP question always focuses on web scripting without specifying as such. In a web environment each language can accomplish the same thing. The main difference would be in some cases one language could accomplish it a little easier than the other.

Web programming is only a very small portion of what can be and is done with Perl. On the other side, the main and almost exclusive purpose of PHP is for web programming.

Perl outshines PHP in its text processing capabilities.

Perl has the CPAN archive which is unsurpassed by any other language.

PHP is 10 years behind Perl in its development.

PHP was developed with ease of learning in mind. However, with that came the promotion of writing sloppy spaghetti code.

PHP has a flat naming space which makes it easy to unintentionally overwrite a variable from anywhere and since we're talking about spaghetti code often built by multiple levels of includes, troubleshooting becomes a nightmare.

Perl is not for everyone and neither is PHP. You will never know if Perl is right for you until you dive in and learn it. We can not convince you.

Based on your comments, it appears to me that you've already made you decision, which is part of the reason I believe you were trolling.


theboyholty
New User

May 8, 2011, 11:00 AM

Post #8 of 9 (1379 views)
Re: [FishMonger] Why use Perl? [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks for the reply.

Some of those things you've mentioned there are frustrations for me in PHP which is why I had been looking into it and when I said couldn't see anything that Perl can do that PHP couldn't, I kind of meant it the other way aswell.

I'm really trying to enhance my CV at the moment and have been learning one or two new technologies. I might give it a go.

Thanks to you all for your input. I may be back with technical questions when I start getting into it.


rovf
Veteran

May 11, 2011, 5:07 AM

Post #9 of 9 (1315 views)
Re: [theboyholty] Why use Perl? [In reply to] Can't Post

Well, a comparision to PHP and (server-side) Javascript are a bit unfair, because the latter languages are optimized for usage in Web application, while Perl is much more general. Hence, unless I want to base my implementation of some already existing, excellent library written in (say, JavaScript), I would prefer Perl simply for flexibility.

It is much more difficult to compare Perl with other languages, because it depends very much on personal taste. For example, some people prefer Java over Perl because it is less permissive - Perl indeed allows you to make wonderful mistake - while other people like Perl *because* of its flexibility.

I personally don't like the (retrofitted) OOP not so much in the way it was done in Perl, and I would prefer Ruby over Perl (to give an example). Also, there are possibly several languages which I would prefer even more, but which I haven't time yet to evaluate - friends suggested Scala, Clojure and Groovy, for instance.


Quote
What can it do that, say, PHP or Javascript can't?


IMO this question does not make much sense. As long as a language is Turing-complete, any language can do everything. In this respect, you might consider learning the Whitespace langauage, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whitespace_(programming_language) ;-)

 
 


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