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Re: Perl vs Python vs ....

Dan Stromberg wrote:
> > For this reason we decided that Perl would be on our base disks, and
> > that packages could use it (well, the subset that's on the base disks)
> > in their preinst/postrm.  Packages which want something else must
> > Depend on it and may only use it in their postinst/prerm.
> There's clearly a place for a stronger scripting language, despite the
> argument posed above.  It's just very sad that it should be perl.  perl
> really fits into many people's stereotypes of "unix as inherently
> cryptic monster", very neatly.

I'm sure C and Assembler fit "cryptic" too.  Just think how much further
advanced the computer industry would be if neither of those had ever been

(that's sarcasm, by the way)

> > There is no point having a religious war over this; this decision was
> > taken a long time ago and can't be changed now, even if we wanted to.
> This is rhetoric.  It could be changed and you know it.  What I mean to
> say is, I really dislike "can't" when what's meant is "won't".

Of course it can be changed.  Anything can be changed!  What he was saying,
and this is obvious to anyone not specifically trying to play with words,
was that it was NOT WORTH THE TROUBLE to change even if we wanted to.

> I daresay that a linux distribution (or the Hurd, or *BSD, or...) that
> doesn't fall into the perl trap, should have a brighter future.

Oh, give it up!  Perl is a fine language.  Its powerful and is quite easy
to write nice clean code with.  It's just not _enforced_ that you write
nice clean code.  It's also very easy to garbage code, but that isn't
enforced, either.

As for the truth of your comment...  Language syntax and symantics have
little to do with a language's success; it's how easy it is to write
useful programs with.  An operating system's success is due primarily
to the amount of software available for it.  (Don't believe me?  Look
at MS-Dos!)

                               ( bcwhite@verisim.com )

    In theory, theory and practice are the same.  In practice, they're not.

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