Perl history

Paul Fenwick pjf at
Tue Sep 9 02:09:58 CDT 2003

G'day Tim/Melb.PM,

On Mon, Sep 08, 2003 at 11:26:46PM +1000, Timothy S. Nelson wrote:

> > respelling of PEARL, arbitrarily chosen for its positive connotations".
> 	Does anyone know if this is correct?  I'd always assumed that the 
> Practical Extraction and Reporting name was designed at the same time.  

	The name then became "Pearl", which mutated into our present-day
	"Perl", partly because Larry saw a reference to another
	language called PEARL, but mostly becausehe's too lazy
	to type five letters all the time.  And, of course, so that
	Perl could be used as a four-letter word.  (You'll note,
	however, the vestiges of the former spelling in the acronym's
	gloss: "Practical Extraction /And/ Report Language".)
		-- Camel Book, 3rd Ed, page 646.

My understanding of the "positive connotations" is that all good
Unix commands are four-letters long.  ;)



Paul Fenwick <pjf at> |
Director of Training                   | Ph:  +61 3 9354 6001
Perl Training Australia                | Fax: +61 3 9354 2681

More information about the Melbourne-pm mailing list