Book Review: Perl by Example, 4th Edition by Ellie Quigley

Perl is an amazingly powerful and succinct language. Although not the most fashionable, Perl is consistent and supported on a vast range of platforms, probably even more than Java. Better still, it gets in and does the job quickly with very little fuss. Perl by Example written by Ellie Quigley and published by Prentice Hall is a comprehensive, example based, and thorough book.

Beginners guide to database administration tools

Welcome to an introduction for the beginner to the basic manipulation of the MySQL database with free software. The purpose of this article is to show how universally straightforward it is to get started with installing and applying a high-grade enterprise ready database like MySQL, and to learn how to manipulate it via numerous free software approaches.

Generating cool fractals

Whether you are a professional or amateur scientist, engineer or mathematician, if you need to make numerical calculations and plots quickly and easily, then PDL (Perl Data Language) is certainly one of the best free software tools to use. PDL has everything that similar high-level, proprietary, numerical calculation languages (like IDL or MATLAB) have. And it certainly comes with all the features you would expect to have in a numerical calculation package.

Adopt an orphan

In the Debian project they refer to packages that no longer have mantainers as orphaned. I think it's a good definition, and I'd extend it to free software packages that are no longer developed.

There are a lot of orphaned packages around, some actually deserve it but unfortunately there are also some that are promising or very good, and now they are almost dead. But, since we are talking about free software, every good developer is encouraged to pick one and try to push it a bit further

Book review: Pro Perl Parsing by Christopher M. Frenz

Pro Perl Parsing is a well-written tome on the subject of various ways of pulling information out of sources such as the HTML, RSS, XML, CSV, the command line and text. More correctly put, the book discusses the extraction of data and some analysis via Perl. The author Christopher M. Frenz understands the value of using CPAN modules and describes parsing through pleasantly brief code examples.

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Your comfort language

I've been programming in Perl for years - over ten now in fact - and I've written numerous books and articles on Perl and Perl programming. I've also worked with Python and written books and articles on Python programming, including a guide to migrating Perl applications to the Python language. For a while I really saw Python as an alternative to Perl, but after so many years and experience with Perl and what was possible with the language it is difficult to move on from the 'Perl comfort zone'.

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