New Projects, Old Perls

I’m looking for a new gig, so I’m talking to a number of different shops, recruiters, et. al.

Over and over again, I’m being told they’re working with very, very old versions of Perl. I recently came back from an interview with a “leading technology company” that is startingnew project in Perl 5.8 and doesn’t want to use Moo or Moose because it’s too hard to get it past legal.

O_o “get it past legal…

They can’t use anything out of CPAN that hasn’t been approved. OK. I get that. Licensing is important. (Less so for purely internal projects, but let’s move on.)

Moo and Moose use the “same as perl” license and have been around for over three and five years respectively.

Either no one has asked, or legal has said no. I’m not sure which is worse.

Is there a better way to ferret out “Modern Perl” jobs? Or just “not 10-year-old Perl” jobs? I’m not against maintaining old code, I just don’t want to write any new “old code.”

Converting HTML::Template Sites to Catalyst

I’ve been spending some time converting sites from CGI and HTML::Template to Catalyst. This has been surprisingly easy, which pleases me.

Strangely, I’m probably going to get to our site last. See: Cobbler’s Children, Shoes (none). Ah, well… c’est la guerre.

Continue reading Converting HTML::Template Sites to Catalyst

Form Handling in Catalyst and Whither FormFu?

One of the core technologies used in many web sites is some kind of form handling. It’s one of the the basic ways users interact with the site. My travails so far have led me to bump into no less than four packages for Catalyst.

Those would be:

Continue reading Form Handling in Catalyst and Whither FormFu?

Installing Catalyst Isn’t A Destination, It’s A Journey

When I’m learning some new thing, if I’m lucky, there’s a bunch of documentation, tutorials, and examples I can use to get started. Once I’m marginally proficient, I like to go back and revisit those items for a variety of reasons. For example:

  • I now have some context for ideas that weren’t clear before, and they make more sense.
  • I can understand why the author made some of the choices they did when selecting what to say (or not say) on a particular subject.
  • I have more ability to fiddle with the examples, and try some of the things I may have learned.

Generally, going back through some of the basics let’s me “fill in” some of the stuff I may have missed the first time around or “unlearn” some bad habits I may be acquiring. It also helps give me a more solid foundation and more complete understanding to build on.

Continue reading Installing Catalyst Isn’t A Destination, It’s A Journey

Simplicity, Elegance, Reliability

I was just reading an article on The Reinvigorated Programmer about Where Dijkstra went wrong: the value of BASIC as a first programming language.

I thought this was particularly interesting:

It’s a horrible way to program, and I am delighted that I don’t have to do it any more. But it’s a fantastic exercise. It develops mental muscles that you’re going to need all through your career and which you’re not likely to develop while doing any of the more productive activities you spend time on.

That article led me to poke around a bit here: Dijkstra on Wikiquote.

Continue reading Simplicity, Elegance, Reliability

Making Modern Perl more visible

(I’m Working on taxes this week, so I only have time for a short post.)

The other night I happened to be in a room with a PHP dev, a Ruby dev, and a Java dev. (I was the Perl dev. Huh.)

This specific mix was no accident and we were discussing how developers think about starting new projects and companies. (The phrase “serial entrepreneur” kept being used. Is sounded vaguely naughty.) All of us had experience with other languages, and didn’t seem “married” to our current tool-of-choice, but the others were all surprised that Perl was still being used at all, much less for “real” projects. I got to do my bit to remind them that Perl was still around and could be considered a viable alternative to PHP, Python, Ruby, Java, etc.

Continue reading Making Modern Perl more visible

Why are you here?

Thus begins my journal about my exciting adventures with Technology!

Right now, I’m working on a “secret” project (no code name) and we have decided to move to the Perl-based Catalyst application framework, with all that entails.

Several of the usual suspects and members of the secret project have opined that my perspective as 1) a card-carrying technical document writer, 2) a gifted amateur in the realm of Perl programming, and 3) a generally insightful person and asker-of-good-questions might be of some interest to the Perl/Catalyst community.

Continue reading Why are you here?