What TPF should do

Ian Malpass ian at indecorous.com
Mon Apr 3 18:22:51 BST 2006

Simon Wistow wrote:
> On Mon, Apr 03, 2006 at 11:29:58AM -0500, Andy Lester said:
>>I'm completely serious.
> I was hoping for less faeces flinging than this to be honest - more fool 
> I, I suppose.

Yes, but your naivity was quite, quite charming ;)

> We did actually do a press release for Perl 5.8.0 and I was actually 
> starting to think up salient points for a 5.10.0 in the shower this 
> morning

"Perl, Bathtub Edition"? SOAP integration would be core, I assume.

> I should point out that, whatever you think, the TPF does a good job 
> under difficult circumstances. One of Perl's strengths has always been 
> its enthusiastic user community  but the communities need (it could be
> argued, some people may disagree) with the needs of business. 
> This is a thankless task done by volunteers.
> On the other, other hand I'm very interested with people who wouldn't 
> normally consider themselves part of "The Community". No offense to any 
> of the previous contributors to this thread but you're hardly what I 
> called The Silent Majority.  None of your views were particularly 
> surprising so that thread was, for all intents and purpose, worthless. 

I think I'm in the Silent Majority, mostly. I use Perl every day at work 
- it's my main language, it's what our product is written in. Perl is my 
job, if not my bitch. I wouldn't say I'm part of The Community. I'm on 
my local PM, and this one (which used to be local, and is certainly 
higher volume than my local one, for good and bad) and I go to local 
meetings every so often, but I have very little interaction with other 
perlistas really.

I actually have no idea what TPF does. I mean, I know it exists, and I 
assume it does good things, but I don't really know what they are. I've 
not browsed their web site (even now, although no doubt I will shortly). 
They have had no impact on my life that I have conciously attributed to 

I mean, that's really mostly my fault. I don't actively follow Perl web 
sites or Perl news. I also don't seek out ways to volunteer, because (as 
Simon knows from experience) I'm very good a volunteering, and very bad 
at actually doing anything, and I'm concious that that sort of volunteer 
is arguably worse than no volunteer at all.

I had a point when I started but I seem to have lost it. Um.

* I use Perl daily, but interact with the Perl community rarely.

* I don't know what TPF does, and just assume it's off being useful 
somewhere without me.

* I understand that the business world liking Perl is good for my future 
and career, but I have little experience of working in businesses that 
haven't already taken Perl on board, so my ideas for evangelising are a 
bit stunted.

* Threads like this remind me that you don't have to be a star 
programmer to be a useful volunteer, but I still tend to think "oh, I'm 
not a good enough Perl programmer to be useful".

* I'd love to volunteer and be useful and give back to the community, 
but I'm time-poor and badly organised.


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