[Melbourne-pm] programming tutorials: Perl

john thornton jdthornton at ozemail.com.au
Sun Nov 14 21:48:41 PST 2010

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Thanks very much for that. I went to the site and downloaded the perl
training book. Perldocs...so many.

The only part that confuses me is that if

# is a comment

then why does the shebang line have any influence:


or as a variant to show warnings for code

#!/usr/bin/perl -w

I am using to using # to "comment out" configuration files in Linux
for setting up mysql and so on.

If I had to sum up my broad intent in learning to program it is to learn
about web and database programming. I am interested in both. It also
complements my other studies [maths in the past and graphics layout now]
. I can already see at this stage that Perl fits into both. I remembered
for the first time in that sentence that Perl is by convention
capitalised for the language, according to the training book by the
programmers on this list, and that perl as an interpreter has a lower
case. So there you go! I learnt something.

I am studying a mixture of python, php/sql and .NET through O'Reilly
Media. I could have done Perl but didn't; they just released a Perl course.

If I had to pick out one thing that not just "interests me" but more
than that, just fascinates me, it is databases. Before I started these
courses I thought that they were pretty dry. But getting into the book
by C.J.Date where he talks about why they work and in what ways, that
blows me away. Out of all database theory I would not right now know
0..001% of it - there is so much of it! Perhaps it is the dynamism of
searches and storages that grabs me. I guess that for "labophobics" like
me who dropped science at year 10 because the lab looked like something
from outer space, there has to be sort of "dynamic" analogue or
substitute. If you are not going to get a job at CERN then maybe a
database is an OK substitute!

I wish that I had into all this earlier. But I don't know how anyone in
the pre-internet world got into computing. The system did me no favours
either, such as the VCE smart alecs taking Pascal out of the maths
textbook. That shocked me. I found an old maths A/B book in a hop shop
and there were Pascal commands in the back.

I said one that I found it hard to enjoy Perl. But I think that was from
a bad tutorial. I don't give up on any language easily. Except maybe
bash with its 0 and 1 the wrong way around for truth tables.

Thanks again

On 15/11/2010 1:30 PM, Sam Watkins wrote:
> On Mon, Nov 15, 2010 at 01:04:43PM +1100, john thornton wrote:
>> As a beginner/tyro/novice at programming I would like to ask people
>> on this list to do something for me. Could someone please look at
>> the following site and tell me what they think of its introductory
>> perl tutorials?"
>> http://showmedo.com/
> hi Andrew,
> I'm not sure about showmedo, they may be okay for an introduction.
> I'd like to recommend the following 'course notes' for learning
> perl:
> http://perltraining.com.au/notes.html
> written by our very own Melbourne perl experts / trainers Paul and
> Jacinta (and friends), you may find them on this list!
> Also, please consider learning the basics of a few similar languages
> such as python, ruby, php and lua.  This way, you will be able to
> find which languages suit you best or are to your taste.  You will
> also see that these languages have very much in common, and that it's
> pretty easy to pick up a new programming language once you have one
> under your belt.
> I like the syntax and 'cleanness' of python, and I like the richness
> and the community of perl.  I also like the speed of C!  So I use and
> learn from several languages, while hacking together my own!
> Good luck!  and don't be shy to ask questions here.
> Sam

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