[NBLUG/talk] Perl vs other scripting methods

Chris Palmer chris at eff.org
Mon May 8 09:56:57 PDT 2006

Todd Cary writes:

> Some years ago when I was working as a DBA, I used Perl to do things
> like nightly backups.  But time has flown by and I have not used Perl
> in over 15 years and now need to write some simple scripts.  Should I
> break out the Perl book (I assume it would still be good enough) or
> should I learn another scripting language?  As I recall, Perl and Php
> are similar and I am fairly proficient with Php.

PHP can be used for this, but PHP is even crazier than Perl, frankly (I
didn't think that was possible except for purposefully pathological
languages like Brainfuck).  Perl was born to do systems administration
tasks, and is ideal for it.  If you haven't used it in 15 years, though,
you'll be happy to discover that it is much more featureful and powerful
than it used to be.

If you feel like learning a new language just for fun, I recommend
Python.  It is very fun, easy to learn, easy to learn, and easy to
maintain.  Other people are telling me that Ruby is great, but I haven't
bothered to learn it yet.

And then there are Lua and Unicon...


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