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Re: Its time we set the score straight on Perl 5 and Perl 6 and debunk our own self generated FUD.

Adam Kennedy
June 17, 2006 10:26
Re: Its time we set the score straight on Perl 5 and Perl 6 and debunk our own self generated FUD.
Message ID:
>> You might be surprised to learn how close to being no longer true this 
>> is. Once the next release of WxPerl is out, you should be able to just 
>> do the following (for Vanilla, which is my testing platform) on Windows.
>> 1. Install Vanilla Perl.
>> 2. > cpan App::GUI::Notepad
>> And it will install properly, Wx and all.
> That's your idea of installing "properly"? How out of touch with 
> everyday end users can you be? What you're describing is a perfect way 
> to limit the audience for your app to other Perl hackers. The moment you 
> start adding prerequisites, and speaking of typing arcane (to Joe 
> Sixpack) commands, you lost just about everyone else.
> To Windows users, a proper install is running install shield. Then they 
> click on Start/Programs/Whatever to run the app. To Mac users, it means 
> copying the .app bundle to wherever they want it to be.


I suspect you have made an incorrect mental association of "properly" to 
"... for newbie end-users".

Firstly, Vanilla Perl DOES come as an Install Shield type .exe, even 
though it is explicitly an "experimental" distribution and not intended 
for the user of ANYBODY.

Strawberry will do also, and may well move up to a .msi installer, and 
that STILL is not intended for newbie end users.

By "properly" I mean it installs via standard CPAN mechanisms.

Do not underestimate how important this is.

Once you can get a package to install properly through the CPAN, there 
are a number of different systems that can take that package and convert 
it to an executable PAR, or a potentially an Install Shield type 
installer, or what have you.

The installation mechanism I described is intended for the P5P audience, 
namely extremely experienced Perl developers.

My assumption was anyone on this list would understand that once you 
reach a clean CPAN install, the rest of the way to something end-usery 
is a separate matter.

Further, there IS no archetypal newbie end-user.

Rather, users sit on an axis with the members of this list at one end of 
the axis, and my 85 year old grandmother who can't watch movies any more 
since they all moved to DVDs, since she's incapable of navigating the 
always-different DVD menus. We were luckier with music, because I was 
able to find her a CD player where she only had to learn the Play 
button, and Eject.

Conversely, my father who is by no means technical but works in an 
office job and uses Windows and Office would certainly be able to deal 
with the Vanilla install process and selecting 
Start->Programs->Vanilla->CPAN Shell, then typing "install 

My mother and sister probably would not.

Please remember this is an extremely technical mailing list about 
porting the Perl internals between different operating systems (and 
other miscellaneous conversation).

Please don't be under any impression that anything discussed here is 
relevant to people who don't know Perl already, unless stated otherwise.

Adam K Perl Programming lists via nntp and http.
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