[Chicago-talk] Promote Perl 6 by saying "Perl 5"

Andy Lester andy at petdance.com
Sun Jun 28 12:22:25 PDT 2009

 From http://perlbuzz.com/2009/06/promote-perl-6-by-saying-perl-5.html

Perl 6 is hurtling toward completion. The specification is nearly  
complete, and Rakudo now passes 68% of the specification tests.  
Applications like November are being written in Perl 6. Perl 6 is no  
vaporware, and the day when Perl 6 is ready for widespread use is  
coming quickly.

Perl 6 has been in development since 2000, and in that time many  
people may have forgotten about the plans we've had for Perl 6. There  
may be those who have never even heard about the plans for Perl 6.  
Those of us who live in the Perl world are aware of the great changes  
afoot, but there are plenty of people who are not.

I think that the time is right to help make those people aware of Perl  
6, and to remind them constantly of what's coming. My proposed  
technique is simple and it takes advantage of the key elements of time  
and repetition to help remind everyone about Perl 6.

     We need to stop referring to Perl 5 as "Perl" and start calling  
it "Perl 5."

Specifying the "5" in "Perl 5" calls attention to the fact that there  
is more than one Perl. It makes the listener or reader who is unaware  
of Perl 6 wonder why the 5 is specified. For the reader who knows  
about Perl 6, hearing "Perl 5" reminds her that Perl 6 also exists.

I don't think it will be too tough. All I ask is that, at the very  
least, when writing about Perl 5 in your blogs or mailing lists that  
you specify the version you're talking about. It doesn't even need to  
be every instance. I'm guessing we'll find that repeatedly saying  
"Perl 5" in a long message will get tedious both for writer and reader.

I think the way to look at it is that "Perl 5" is the formal name for  
the language, and later references can refer to it as "Perl," almost  
like a nickname. Just that first reminder of "Perl 5" will be enough  
to help lodge in the reader's brain.

With enough time & repetition, it will get to be habit in our minds.  
With enough time & repetition, the computing world will be reminded of  
Perl 6 coming soon.


Andy Lester => andy at petdance.com => www.theworkinggeek.com => AIM:petdance

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