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Re: just curious to know

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ToddAndMargo via perl6-users
June 14, 2020 20:06
Re: just curious to know
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On 2020-06-14 08:04, Radhakrishnan Venkataraman wrote:
> Hi,
> I had been a perl 5.0 user in the past.  Ever since perl 6.0 was 
> announced, I waited, like many, indefinitely.  At last perl 6.0 has just 
> started from its starting block and is also in the race.  I am happy 
> about that.

Hi Radhakrishnan,

I am a beginner at Raku and this is from a beginner's
prospective.  (But when did that ever stop me?)

I come from all kinds of computer aided testing programs,
most of which I have forgotten, then Pascal, then
Modula 2.  More recently bash, batch and Perl 5.

I program in what is called "Top Down".

Consequently, I use tons and tons of subroutines.  Perl 5
is an "absolute nightmare" for Top Down.  Perl 5 passes
variables to subroutines as pointers in an array.  (Note
that Pointers in Perl 5 are referred to as "references"
and calling them the generic term "pointer" is picking a
fight with Perl 5 programmers.)  There are no pointer
(references) in Raku as they are not necessary AND GOOD

When I discovered subroutines in Raku, I though I'd died
and gone to Top Down heaven.

The insane subroutine parameters in Perl5 make for a lot
of Bottom Up programming.  Because of it Perl 5 programs
tend to become "Write Only" programs in a heck of a hurry
and are very hard to maintain.

The main program I support downloads raw web pages and
digs through them looking for new software revision.
I use regex's "a lot".  Just my personal opinion,
but regex's in Raku and a ton easier to use and much
more well thought out than Perl 5.  (Perl 5's
regex's remind me of sed's regex's.)

Also Raku's text manipulation programs are to die for.
You will find yourself using a lot fewer regex's
because of them: "contains", "starts-with", "ends-with"
come to mind.

Where Perl 5 has it over Perl6 (Raku) is:

1) the documents in Perl 5, called Perl Docs, are
wonderfully written and cater to both beginners and
experts.  Raku's documents are written as a
refresher for those that already know what they
are doing and not for the beginner.  You will tear
your hair out trying use them and maybe say a few
"bad" words.

2) Perl 5 compiles in a heck of a hurry.  Large
Raku programs take up to ten seconds to compile.
They are working on it.  The work around is
the put the main body of your program in a module
and let .precomp (precomile) take care of it.  Raku
only re-compiles modules if you have made a change

3) Raku can not make system calls to Windows if
it has quotes in it.  It is fixed, but waiting to
be rolled out.  The work around is to write
to a bat file and then run the bat file.

4) Raku programs always do a pop up box in
Windows and can not be run in the background,
as they can in Linux.  They are also working on
it.  I do not know the progress, but it has
a "very soon" feeling.

Where neither shine is the lack of GUI component
for laying out GUI windows.  Not to fear, Raku
does have a module that interfaces with GTK's
(Gnome Tool Kit's) "Glade" GUI interface designer.
I have not used it yet, but plan on pounding it
in the future.  Oh, and GTK and Glade is wonderfully
cross platform.  Yippee!!

5) Perl 5 has a much more "mature" module base.
But not to fear on that front either.  Raku
is quickly getting there and the rate of
development is dizzying.

And very important, Raku has an absolutely wonderful
army of mensches both on this list and on the chat
line that bend over backwards to help you.  The
developers have some astounding programming chops.

The Perl 5 newsgroups tend to be "grouchy", although
they are quite helpful.  Perl Monks talks over
everyone's heads.  And Perl Monks web interface must
have  been designed by the devil himself, when he
was not working on batch programming

To conclude. I absolute LOVE Raku.  It is my
favorite language of all time.  It is the most
"human readable" I have come across.  Compound that
with Top Down, programs become a dream to maintain.
Perl 5 is anything but human readable and I hated
trying to maintain them.

I have converted all but one Perl 5 program to Raku
(Raku's ftp module does not work) and have started
converting over my longest/worst batch and bash
programs to it.  I strongly recommend it.  You will
fall in love with it too.

My 2 cents,

And now a word from Linus Torvalds:
When you say, "I wrote a program that
crashed Windows, "people just stare at
you blankly and say, "Hey, I got those
with the system, for free."
      -- Linus Torvalds

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