Is perl dead?

I am really tired of hearing all the arguements that perl is dead and a useless language. All the php people that belive php drives the internet bashing the perl junkies.

I was reading a post on oriellynet.com about how 3000 new perl modules were added to CPAN in 2006 and twice that was expected in 2007. How major retailers like Amazon, Ticket Master and Shopzilla all depend on perl for their backend and how development is strong.

But in the end, the creaps from the php camp all buzzed in with their 2 cents. Saying that perl was not good at all and was dying. The exact quote was:

"Perl is overly VERBOSE and extremely cryptic for a newcomer. If you compare a typical perl syntax to python or ruby both python and ruby win - for a newcomer. If you dont believe me, try on your own :)"

One post was very interesting saying that perl was lousy for newcommers. To which an obvios perl diehard replied:

Why does a language have to be nice to newcomers? I don't remember that being a prerequisite for a programming language. Let's only use languages for a subset of people that will never stay within that subset of users.

Well said!

I think the big problem with perl is that it is an older language that is not as sexy as php or ruby. It does not have the web 2.0 hype of a myspace or youtube. Its a powerful and boring language that works like an old plow horse, strong and steady never giving up.

People should not assume that because a language is not highly visable it is dead. In fact quite the opposite.

The perl teen programmers of 10 years ago that hyped up the web 1.0 forums have gone on to earn millions of dollars building complex networks and applications that php can only dream of managing.

Consequently, they have not been busy posting free programs and offering perl help in coding forums. They are driving Bentlys and Porsches and having a great life wile the teens of today blog away the language of their parents. They now have mortgages and bills to pay and less time to build freeware websites.

We can certainly expect that in any industry. New sexy ideas that apeal to newcommers and are easy to use and well supported will get all the attention. Stocks like google trading at 35-50 times earnings with $0 dividends while utility companies that supply all the electricity to run the internet have no appeal while paying solid dividends.

Are we ready to say the power plants are old and we don't need them any longer?

Of course not.

And we have perl. Not as sexy as the rest, but nonetheless a staple in an industry that could not survive without it. Too many programs depend on it. To many operating systems use it and too many high end programmers are building on it.

The fact is, the top perl programmers can run circles around the top php and puby people, they just don't go out online telling everyone about it.

It only happens that this programmer who has made millions of dollars with perl has watched the php'ers rant and rave and thought it ws time to give perl a boost.

I hope more programmers will build websites with some of their work and share back into a community that has made them rich. Then we can kick some php asses!