[DCPM] Speaking of Perl
aaron.trevena at gmail.com
Sat Jun 19 07:16:11 PDT 2010
On 18 June 2010 20:31, Martijn Grooten <sweetwatergeek at gmail.com> wrote:
> How widely is it used these days?
Very widely - in terms of job ads in the uk, it has more than ruby,
python and php combined.
As a dynamic language it tends to dominate in a few areas, often used
together with C/C++ or Java depending on the industry :
* banking and finance
* large organisations with a heavy web presence, i.e. bbc, etc
* email and web hosting providers
* online classifieds (curiously enough the biggest ones, such as
gumtree, craigslist and slando are all perl)
It also does well in, but no longer dominates, areas like render
farms, science, SAAS providers and startups
> However, when I talk to people who know a a bit about programming and
> stuff and tell them I mostly use Perl, they stare at me as if I just
> told them I browse the web using Quarterdeck Mosaic.
That's more a case of a wider group of people knowing a little about
programming and a wider selection of programming languages and tools -
in Perl's "cgi-script and mod_perl" boom ~2000 python was a tiny
niche, php was very very basic and rough around the edges and ruby
since then the Ruby bubble inflated and has been deflating for a
couple of years (ruby jobs market share has been static for nearly 3
years), python has been widely hyped because of google and the
reddit/digg/slasdot echo chamber but stopped eating at perls slice of
the market/hype last year - now dropping in tiobe and other use/hype
metrics instead of rising.
See Tim Bunce's excellent and well-researched talk at
> So do people still use Perl professionally? Privately? Are new people
> (say at uni) still learning Perl?
Yup - use it professionally fulltime, and doing pretty well thanks :)
In the last 3 years I've used it for new projects in non-perl shops,
rewriting legacy aviation stuff done in php and perl, and a whole lot
of ecommerce varying from small to sites advertising on tv and even
localised to 20 countries in 12 languages (including greece and
..and thats being picky and only taking contracts or jobs that allow
me to work from home full time, and flexible hours and pay enough to
have a decent house, a couple of cars and 2 kids.
Yeah people are learning perl - I'm training 2 juniors at my team in
halifax, and we're recruiting another who were prepared to cross train
to perl from php or whatever.
When I graduated from uni in 2000 pretty much at the height of perl
use for web development, only a handful in my course (computer systems
and networks) had heard of it, and only a couple of us learnt it -
other less eclectic courses in the computing school had even less
use/interest, from what I've heard those levels are roughly the same -
more people are learning php or python where it's taught as part of
the course, but few of those will use it after uni, as the jobs stll
asren't really there unless you're really involved in the language or
framework communities and know the right people - most will instead
learn java, C++ or c# when they start a job, a small no will learn
perl, but about the same as, say late 90s or 2004 or later.
Aaron J Trevena, BSc Hons
LAMP System Integration, Development and Consulting
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