- Series: Effective Software Development Series
- Paperback: 504 pages
- Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional; 2 edition (April 29, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0321496949
- ISBN-13: 978-0321496942
- Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 0.7 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 25 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,092,462 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Effective Perl Programming: Ways to Write Better, More Idiomatic Perl (2nd Edition) (Effective Software Development Series) 2nd Edition
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From the Back Cover
The Classic Guide to Solving Real-World Problems with Perl-Now Fully Updated for Today's Best Idioms! For years, experienced programmers have relied on "Effective Perl Programming "to discover better ways to solve problems with Perl. Now, in this long-awaited second edition, three renowned Perl programmers bring together today's best idioms, techniques, and examples: everything you need to write more powerful, fluent, expressive, and succinct code with Perl. Nearly twice the size of the first edition, "Effective Perl Programming, Second Edition, "offers everything from rules of thumb to avoid common pitfalls to the latest wisdom for using Perl modules. You won't just learn the right ways to use Perl: You'll learn why these approaches work so well. New coverage in this edition includes Reorganized and expanded material spanning twelve years of Perl evolutionEight new chapters on CPAN, databases, distributions, files and filehandles, production Perl, testing, Unicode, and warningsUpdates for Perl 5.12, the latest version of PerlSystematically updated examples reflecting today's best idioms You'll learn how to work with strings, numbers, lists, arrays, strictures, namespaces, regular expressions, subroutines, references, distributions, inline code, warnings, Perl:: Tidy, data munging, Perl one-liners, and a whole lot more. Every technique is organized in the same Items format that helped make the first edition so convenient and popular.
About the Author
Joseph N. Hall has programmed for a living since 1984, taught his first computer class at age fourteen, and has worked with Perl since 1993. Joshua A. McAdams, a programmer at Google, is the voice of Perlcast. He has hosted two Perl conferences, conducts meetings for Chicago Perl Mongers, has spoken about Perl at events worldwide, and is a CPAN author. brian d foy is coauthor of Learning Perl, Fifth Edition (O’Reilly Media, 2008), and Intermediate Perl (O’Reilly Media, 2006), and author of Mastering Perl (O’Reilly Media, 2007). He established the first Perl user group, the New York Perl Mongers; publishes The Perl Review; maintains parts of the core Perl documentation; and has more than ten years of Perl training experience.
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That said, there are times when Perl hits a "sweet spot": a) it is available on for all Linux distress; b) it integrates well in the shell environment; c) it easily replaces multiple shell-based utilities (sed, awk, bash, etc.); and there are modules to interact with the entire application stack. It is a useful tool and I needed to find a way to gain a appreciation for it.
Enter Effective Perl. I was introduced to the first edition of the book some time ago. The company that I worked for was transitioning away from Perl, but there was a lot of Perl code still in play. I had tried a number of other books and just couldn't "get it". The syntax wasn't the problem - it was the change in context. Very poorly explained in these other text. That early edition gave me enough insight to read and understand some Perl. I didn't need much as we were moving to another language at the time.
Years later, I'm doing a lot of Python code. So, why even look at Perl now? Well, Python is going through a lot of changes right now. Some tools "prefer" 2.x, while others "recommend" 3.3+. Different modules work with specific versions, etc. A lot of what I do is administrative work. I have to assume a base level of tools to being work; and I do not want to rely overly much on the shell alone. Perl, warts and all, provides the tools needed, a guaranteed presence, and an easier integration path.
This book helped me to "think" in Perl. This make it *a lot* easier to write efficient code and (more importantly) to debug the code written. Does this mean that I will give up Python (and Ruby)? Not a chance. Both are better OO based languages. (Yes, I know about Moose. I just prefer the other languages in this regard.) It *does* mean that I can safely replace a number of utilities with just one tool: Perl and like it.
Perl has some warts, but it can be an effective tool in the right circumstances. This is an excellent book to understand how to use Perl - when it is necessary to do so.
I bought this book for my Kindle, and just love the author's style. The author gets straight to the point, without alot of fluff. The topics are broken down into manageable chunks, so it is easy to read one or two when you have a few minutes. I have no issues reading it on my Kindle (unlike some computer books), the only downside to the Kindle version is that (for me) it can take longer to look up pieces of information when I want to refer to sections of the book as a reference. But, that's a Kindle issue and not anything negative against the contents of the book itself.
I love the examples in the book. The author's message is very clear, and easy to understand. Just when you think you know all of the Perl tricks, you read on and discover more. If there is a challenge in understanding an example, I can easily type it into my computer and try it for myself as the sample code snippets are quite short; however I found this is rarely needed.
I believe this book is a great way to develop smart effective Perl code - with the correct calls, the correct structure, the correct debugging, the correct packages, the correct idioms, etc. In addition, I feel this book is a great tutorial on the Perl language itself (even if you have never coded in Perl before); the author steps through the topics in a carefully designed manner, and slowly introduces the various programming constructs of Perl.
The only suggestion for improvement I have for the authors is to create exercises at the end of each chapter for users to apply some of the concepts learned. And, of course, I would appreciate answers to those exercises at the end of the book. Otherwise, it's a work of art. Thanks very much, and please continue writing more.
The book expresses a point of view/approach to Perl that has been very useful in thinking about how to approach specific types of problems. While it provides specific examples I think it is more about the thought process of how to approach problem solving within the context of Perl.
Others have pointed out the kindle version has many of the examples in the form of images. On my Kindle Fire HD 8.9", Dolby Audio, Dual-Band Wi-Fi, 32 GB - Includes Special Offers this does significantly diminish reading pleasure as they display quite small. The work-around I found was double tapping the image pop-up a zoomed view.
NOT ALL examples are in image format. Some are text. I strongly recommend the publisher fix this deficiency as it makes the book much less pleasant to read on backlit kindle versions.
Even so, the book is good enough in my opinion to warrant 4 stars.
I hope this helps someone.