Perl publishing and attracting new developers

gvim gvimrc at
Wed Sep 18 21:03:02 BST 2013

On 18/09/2013 18:48, Peter Corlett wrote:
> Dancer and Mojolicious are lightweight, DBIx::Class only slightly less so, and are not separately enough material for a full-sized book. At best, you're talking a 100 page print-on-demand labour of love.

I've come across no less than 3 Sinatra books so why should a Dancer 
book be considered lightweight?

> Mojolicious and Moose *have* such a book, and although I can't find the ISBN for the Moose book, Mojolicious's is

I don't think a book published purely in German is that relevant.

> The hypothetical "Modern Perl Cookbook" is a layering violation. Perl Cookbook is a collection of short hints and tips on how to do simple tasks. Modern Perl is how to architect a large system. That's two separate topics, and thus two separate books. Which already exist.

Perl Cookbook is 10 years old so not relevant to Perl 5.10+, ie. Modern 
Perl. Hence my "layering violation". Python Cookbook has had 2 new 
editions since the 1st edition appeared in 2002. All I'm saying is that 
when major pillars of the Perl library fall behind like this it gives 
the impression that the language is also dated. We don't see it that way 
from the inside, of course, but I'm addressing how Perl appears to new 
developers making a choice of language.

> Then you have books where you've taken some other topic, and just stick "with Perl" on the end:
>> Agile Development with Perl & Moose
>> RESTful APIs with Perl
>> HTML5, Javascript & Perl
>> Network Programming with Perl (maybe an update from Lincoln Stein)
>> Scientific Programming with Perl
> What does the "and Perl" add to the material? It may as well say "and Intercal" for all the good it does.

The "and Perl" makes all the difference. If I'm a new developer choosing 
a language and I see "RESTful APIs with Python/PHP/Ruby" and nothing 
from Perl it may influence my choice of language even if there is a 
chapter tucked away in a Catalyst book somewhere. Whether it's marketing 
or not, Ruby and Python are taking the initiative, as I see it, by 
producing plenty of books which combine the language with another 
technology. You may not like it but it seems to interest developers.

>> Analysing Big Data with Perl
> This is also just a "with Perl" title, but merits picking out. "Big Data" is a nebulous term of art much like "Web 2.0" is, and roughly means "the fashionable technologies we're using with a big layer of marketing slathered on so people don't realise it's mostly hot air".

I'm sure your purist's aversion to mixing Perl with any other technology 
serves you  well but the fact remains that Ruby and Python seem to have 
benefited from doing a little of what the publishers want. Contrasted 
with the dearth of Perl publications a newcomer to the scene can be 
forgiven for surmising that Perl has become less relevant.


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