Flutterby™! : Perlish Monk

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Perlish Monk

2014-05-08 15:08:30.444786+00 by meuon 1 comments

I spent the last couple of days extending someone else's Perl code that downloads files from a bank (via SFTP no less) and imports files into a local database. Adam did a very nice job on the project. Well thought out, documented, notes, readme.. etc.. and yet I hated it. It wasn't "mine".. and I seldom do anything real in Perl any more.

Have to admit, once I got my head wrapped around his thought processes and his personal choices of how to do some things in Perl, I found myself liking Perl more and more again. It was worth spending some time figuring out how to extend what was there and learning, instead of re-writing.

[ related topics: Perl Open Source Writing Heinlein Education Databases hubris ]

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#Comment Re: made: 2014-05-08 15:57:11.965994+00 by: Dan Lyke

I've been thinking about this a lot in the context of my current job, which involves working on a huge installed base of Perl written to various different standards. It's completely frustrating, and I've whined several (many?) times that I now hate Perl, but as I take some looks at other languages and take looks back at my own code, I think one of the big problems with Perl is that huge reliance on TIMTOWTDI means that often we're speaking all of the dialects.

It's like being fluent in English: There are people on other continents who speak the same language I do, but when we communicate we both have to slow down and use subsets of our vocabularies to understand each other.

Sometimes taking the time to learn those other dialects, or to learn jargon, gives us a better understanding of the problem space. Sometimes it's just a royal pain in the tail.