- Paperback: 394 pages
- Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 7 edition (October 28, 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1491954329
- ISBN-13: 978-1491954324
- Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #95,905 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Learning Perl: Making Easy Things Easy and Hard Things Possible 7th Edition
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About the Author
Randal L. Schwartz is a two-decade veteran of the software industry. He is skilled in software design, system administration, security, technical writing, and training. Randal has coauthored the "must-have" standards: Programming Perl, Learning Perl, Learning Perl for Win32 Systems, and Effective Perl Learning, and is a regular columnist for WebTechniques, PerformanceComputing, SysAdmin, and Linux magazines.
He is also a frequent contributor to the Perl newsgroups, and has moderated comp.lang.perl.announce since its inception. His offbeat humor and technical mastery have reached legendary proportions worldwide (but he probably started some of those legends himself). Randal's desire to give back to the Perl community inspired him to help create and provide initial funding for The Perl Institute. He is also a founding board member of the Perl Mongers (perl.org), the worldwide Perl grassroots advocacy organization. Since 1985, Randal has owned and operated Stonehenge Consulting Services, Inc. Randal can be reached for comment at email@example.com or (503) 777-0095, and welcomes questions on Perl and other related topics.
brian d foy is a prolific Perl trainer and writer, and runs The Perl Review to help people use and understand Perl through educational, consulting, code review, and more. He's a frequent speaker at Perl conferences. He's the co-author of Learning Perl, Intermediate Perl, and Effective Perl Programming, and the author of Mastering Perl. He was been an instructor and author for Stonehenge Consulting Services from 1998 to 2009, a Perl user since he was a physics graduate student, and a die-hard Mac user since he first owned a computer. He founded the first Perl user group, the New York Perl Mongers, as well as the Perl advocacy nonprofit Perl Mongers, Inc., which helped form more than 200 Perl user groups across the globe. He maintains the perlfaq portions of the core Perl documentation, several modules on CPAN, and some stand-alone scripts.
Tom Phoenix has been working in the field of education since 1982. After more than thirteen years of dissections, explosions, work with interesting animals, and high-voltage sparks during his work at a science museum, he started teaching Perl classes for Stonehenge Consulting Services, where he's worked since 1996. Since then, he has traveled to many interesting locations, so you might see him soon at a Perl Mongers' meeting. When he has time, he answers questions on Usenet's comp.lang.perl.misc and comp.lang.perl.moderated newsgroups, and contributes to the development and usefulness of Perl. Besides his work with Perl, Perl hackers, and related topics, Tom spends his time on amateur cryptography and speaking Esperanto. His home is in Portland, Oregon.
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Top customer reviews
The intention behind this book is not to make you a Perl guru in 24 hours or to teach you everything there is to know about the language. Rather, it is geared toward the individual just starting out with Perl and needing guidance to get started. This book does a great job with that – it covers basic syntactical constructs, it explains why some of the things in the language are set up the way they are, and it gives information in practical, easy-to-understand terms. This is a perfect formula for teaching a newbie. It is also a good reference for going back and filling in gaps in your knowledge.
Like other good books on learning a computing language, this one breaks everything down into logical groupings of language constructs by chapter – assigning variables, flow control constructs such as loops, file handling and more. It also goes into some measure of detail on some of the language features that make Perl special, in particular hashes and regular expressions. I have worked with hashes and regexes in C, but Perl's implementation is cleaner (in my opinion) and easier to understand. And, they are built into the language, not tacked on through libraries later which is one of the primary criticisms I have heard voiced about C++ in particular.
O'Reilly books have a consistent format and structure that should be familiar if you have used any of their other books. This one is no exception: it is very approachable, easy to read and easy to understand. The authors do not talk down to the reader but present materials in a straightforward manner that does not insult.
One thing I like about this book is that it makes very clear what features are available in newer versions of Perl only and which are long-standing features. This matters to those who are using older Perl installations such as with RHEL 5 and have not yet upgraded. Be sure to look for the tags attached to code snippets that specify Perl revisions where the feature being discussed is first introduced. This is the main thing, aside from the introductory material, that separates this edition from the previous.
The primary criticism I have of this book is something that is common to most O'Reilly books – it is expensive. There are less expensive books available that present the same materials, though the format is likely to be very different and the coverage of some topics might be presented in less detail. I personally am willing to spend more for O'Reilly books as I have consistently had very good experiences with them. Others may feel differently.
I have worked with a previous edition of this book and I am pleased with it. It has a familiar format and it does a very good job of being a solid introduction to learning the Perl language. It is not comprehensive and it is designed to be an introduction to Perl, and to that end it succeeds. If you're just getting started with Perl this is a fine place to start, but if you are an advanced Perl guru looking for more coverage of more obscure points of the language there are better choices.