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The cargo cult continues.

It's disgusting how much we all rely on intuition and gut feelings when evaluating large swathes of technology. The internet hates perl so people criticize it without even using it. People will use what everybody else is using without actually trying out the options. There's too much information and so we must go with what others have said, and it all becomes hearsay. Keeping up is more like wizardry than engineering. Go with what the crowd says because I can't possibly install all of those libraries, play with the examples, and give my own evaluation. Hey look a new js framework just came out...




I used it quite a bit, and wrote some applications in it that are still in use a decade later. The "write-only" aspect of Perl is real -- it enables many styles and idioms, and as a result, tends to requires reading knowledge of all of them. It also has some unusual design decisions (list vs. scalar context) and some hacks ("bless") that do not contribute to readability, especially for people who do not get to use Perl all day long. Python is a lot more readable, and does most of the same stuff.

What Perl did that was amazing was bring regular expressions "to the masses", and Perl-compatible regular expressions (pcre) are still the defacto standard that most subsequent libraries have used (more or less).

"The internet" is an abstraction and doesn't hate (or love) anything. That itself is the kind of gross generalization you are criticizing. And one can criticize a language and still have respect for it.


Let's be honest -- people only use what everyone else is using because it lowers the bar to getting hired to 90+% of programming jobs.

I can count the number of tool-agnostic development teams that I've met on one hand. Many more have claimed they are when they are not.

If you aren't aiming for the top 10% of jobs (vague quality metric that you can interpret as you wish), then you want to have above-average knowledge of _just_ Python, Go, React, Docker and Kubernetes.

The situation only changes when high profile current/ex-Googlers (or similar) start talking about a language/tool a lot. Then the mass hops on board that train too.


I agree with the thrust of your comment but not the specifics. There are still a ton of Java and JavaScript (not necessarily React) jobs out there in the "bottom 90%".

And I don't think "high-profile" people talking has much effect. Paul Graham talked up lisp for a while, and I was certainly interested (I like lisps), but... there are still precious few jobs that use Lisp. Most people learn technologies that they either need currently or are in use in jobs they know of and might conceivably get.


Even at shops just hiring for Java or JavaScript, I don't think knowing them is a career advantage. They don't make you more hirable than you would be otherwise. That's really the only reason I left those out.

Paul Graham, while a thought-leader of sorts, isn't generally thought of as someone working at either the edge of tech or in large-scale systems. That's why nobody wants to chase the tech he's using vs what Google/Facebook/etc are.




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