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Re: Revisiting smart match

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Sawyer X
January 1, 2018 09:29
Re: Revisiting smart match
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Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this.

On 12/28/2017 07:26 PM, yary wrote:
> Howdy all,
> I've been writing perl for $ since 1993, a bit before Perl 5. One of
> the things I appreciated about the 5.0 release was, even with all the
> new features and wonderful syntax, the guarantee of compatibility.
> Perl 4's "$package'foo" variables didn't have to become
> "$package::foo" when updating to Perl 5. And my client could keep
> using my code on a new box without my having to edit all the package
> references. Plus, I could keep using "mailagent" to sort my mail with
> a new perl, until Rafael got around to updating that too.
> I appreciate this push for an easy-to-understand, useful "switch"
> statement. s there another way to solve the issues of "given/when/~~"
> that lets old code keep running under the new perls? Please also
> understand that Perl's compatibility and stability from version to
> version is a strong selling point. You aren't bound to Larry's 90's
> ideal of yesterday's code running forever, but when it comes to
> "given/when/~~," understand this perl hacker's POV in 2007-
> "Yay we got a switch statement!  These first few rules look OK... then
> it gets complicated... so I'll stick to the simple ones."
> And I take advantage of "given / when" to test a value against
> multiple constant options, and "if ($item ~~ $arrayref)" to test for
> set membership. They are easy to read and work great (as a bonus the
> set membership test beats "grep" in my Benchmark test.)
> From my POV, as a programmer, smartmatch and for(given)/when were
> infrequently wanted, and took some care to use, but very handy once in
> place. They ended up in a fair amount of diverse projects over the
> last decade. Much of my "DarkPan" relies on it. My old customers are
> using it unknowingly with warnings going to log files that  no one
> reads anymore.
> Smartmatch, given/when were core language for six years, and when it
> was declared "experimental" in 2013, there wasn't a clear replacement
> to migrate to, so I turned on the experimental pragma and kept running
> with it.
> Those features are far from perfect-- don't let the perfect be the
> enemy of the good! Is there room for given/when/~~ to keep being "good
> enough" for what they are do in existing code, while you're coding up
> something even better?
> -y

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