to do then now would be retro, to do then then was very nowtro
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Perl

since 1987 (earliest usage recorded on this site was 1985)

Perl is a high-level, general-purpose, interpreted, dynamic programming language. Perl was originally developed by Larry Wall in 1987 as a general-purpose Unix scripting language to make report processing easier. Perl borrows features from other programming languages including C, shell scripting (sh), AWK, and sed. The language provides powerful text processing facilities without the arbitrary data length limits of many contemporary Unix tools, facilitating easy manipulation of text files. It is also used for graphics programming, system administration, network programming, applications that require database access and CGI programming on the Web. Perl is nicknamed "the Swiss Army chainsaw of programming languages" due to its flexibility and adaptability.

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Technology Timeline Graph
 
1985
1986
1987
1988
1989
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
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rragan
joemcmahon
vangale
dfan
ironfort
ndw
gnat
bmaxwell
liza
jtauber
rrainey
af
boutell
AndyC
enki
takitimu
mpirnat
mjhagen
MarkofCain
ashugg
zeroaltitude
vitaliyf
growe
dabeaz
eMBee
jjames
bob
thraxil
wilane
kan
daddy
hexdump42
supakoo
kevinpet
dl
frankwiles
reed
RossP
brucehoult
Cema
benjaminws
bg4
David
jamesotron
carljm
jkocherhans
westonruter
givas
robhudson
arowla
streetcleaner
jcarbaugh
adders
pydanny
jbeigel
twhitton
r1chardj0n3s
cpt_ahag
tartley
gklein
lambacck
eykd
sfaruque
danceswithvowels
1stvamp
bittercoder
jeffself
nathans
marcelor
davisagli
vvarp
Bunglebogs
shiny
paltman
mfandreas
thumper
daniellindsley
larry
mowens
rogerclark
Sitwonade
eddymul
honzakral
sceptreofjudah
ShawnMilo
Sitwon
drakkos
mwalling
ghoseb
cdeblois
sli
jefftriplett
zellyn
CerealBoy
asenchi
passy
sbastn
moriogawa
pmclanahan
quakehead
Kanru
floyd
davidpaccoud
ubersoldat
sjaekel
iamteem
eculver
nsmgr8
adamcik
bocke
natevw
NX172
binarydud
krisse2
greyfade
dan
Raisapius
bkonkle
joshontheweb
amackera
Swizec
sdhamilton
xhae
mantovani
nbprithv
andyrak
gridaphobe
mallipeddi
timus
thaostra
perimosocordiae
CrociDB
MechanisM
rragan - 33 years
joemcmahon - 31 years
vangale - 13 years
dfan - 9 years
ironfort - 28 years
ndw - 26 years
gnat - 26 years
bmaxwell - 25 years
liza - 9 years
jtauber - 5 years
rrainey - 24 years
af - 5 years
boutell - 12 years
AndyC - 2 years
enki - 8 years
takitimu - 23 years
mpirnat - 6 years
mjhagen - 3 years
MarkofCain - 23 years
ashugg - 23 years
zeroaltitude - 23 years
vitaliyf - 6 years
growe - 23 years
dabeaz - 23 years
eMBee - 3 years
jjames - 23 years
bob - 22 years
thraxil - 22 years
wilane - 22 years
kan - 1 years
daddy - 22 years
hexdump42 - 2 years
supakoo - 22 years
kevinpet - 12 years
dl - 21 years
frankwiles - 14 years
reed - 21 years
RossP - 4 years
brucehoult - 21 years
Cema - 20 years
benjaminws - 20 years
bg4 - 20 years
David - 20 years
jamesotron - 3 years
carljm - 6 years
jkocherhans - 2 years
westonruter - 20 years
givas - 3 years
robhudson - 4 years
arowla - 12 years
streetcleaner - 4 years
jcarbaugh - 4 years
adders - 19 years
pydanny - 1 years
jbeigel - 4 years
twhitton - 19 years
r1chardj0n3s - 3 years
cpt_ahag - 8 years
tartley - 1 years
gklein - 18 years
lambacck - 3 years
eykd - 18 years
sfaruque - 18 years
danceswithvowels - 18 years
1stvamp - 7 years
bittercoder - 2 years
jeffself - 6 years
nathans - 18 years
marcelor - 5 years
davisagli - 5 years
vvarp - 2 years
Bunglebogs - 17 years
shiny - 17 years
paltman - 2 years
mfandreas - 5 years
thumper - 3 years
daniellindsley - 5 years
larry - 17 years
mowens - 17 years
rogerclark - 16 years
Sitwonade - 16 years
eddymul - 16 years
honzakral - 3 years
sceptreofjudah - 16 years
ShawnMilo - 16 years
Sitwon - 16 years
drakkos - 1 years
mwalling - 3 years
ghoseb - 1 years
cdeblois - 15 years
sli - 15 years
jefftriplett - 15 years
zellyn - 1 years
CerealBoy - 15 years
asenchi - 15 years
passy - 6 years
sbastn - 1 years
moriogawa - 15 years
pmclanahan - 7 years
quakehead - 14 years
Kanru - 14 years
floyd - 14 years
davidpaccoud - 4 years
ubersoldat - 3 years
sjaekel - 3 years
iamteem - 1 years
eculver - 2 years
nsmgr8 - 1 years
adamcik - 13 years
bocke - 5 years
natevw - 3 years
NX172 - 12 years
binarydud - 1 years
krisse2 - 11 years
greyfade - 11 years
dan - 11 years
Raisapius - 10 years
bkonkle - 2 years
joshontheweb - 1 years
amackera - 10 years
Swizec - 2 years
sdhamilton - 10 years
xhae - 10 years
mantovani - 10 years
nbprithv - 10 years
andyrak - 9 years
gridaphobe - 9 years
mallipeddi - 2 years
timus - 9 years
thaostra - 9 years
perimosocordiae - 8 years
CrociDB - 8 years
MechanisM - 8 years
1985–
1987–
When the Cray Y-MP was delivered at NASA, the sales engineer suggested that instead of having to learn C, ack, sed, and shell, I should just learn Perl. It's been my primary language ever since then. First use was support code for the Convex Unitree system at NASA; switched over to Web programming, and then branched out into QA automation. Now working at blekko.com ... doing something I can't talk about yet. But still Perl!
1987–1999
Don't remember the exact year but it was when Perl 2.0 was first sent across Usenet on comp.lang.sources. Was blown away by how much easier it made system level programming. Later after having to use it full time for a job was blown away by how hard it was to maintain. Have tried to avoid it since.
1990–
1990–1998
1992–
Picked up Perl in the early days of the web. It was used to reformat text into HTML, and of course in the elegant Plexus web server. Back then, before CGI, we got dynamic web pages by hacking the web server to do different things based on the URL. It's obviously better to do that in Perl than in C, so Perl took off. I moved to the US, helped tchrist with the FAQ which lead to the cookbook which lead to training and conferences and YAPC and perl6 and The Perl Foundation and all sorts of wonderful things. Perl was the first time I saw a community coalesce. There's something magic when people who know each other online meet for the first time in person. I've seen it happen at other conferences since, but the early days of The Perl Conference were special because it was the first time I'd seen it happen, and I was part of it. Love the Perl community just as I love Perl, warts and all. I use other programming languages from time to time, hang out in other communities from time to time, but Perl and I know each other the best.
1992–
1993–2001
Migrated to Python.
1993–
1994–1998
Used Perl 4 a lot and Perl 5 a bit. Haven't touched it since I learnt Python, though.
1994–1998
I was young, I needed the money.
1994–1995
Dabbled with Perl in the early days of CGI on webservers. I hate it with a passion.
1994–2005
I wrote "CGI Programming in C and Perl," which was a PHP 4 book, but not bad overall. I also wrote PerlMUD, which would probably be in wider use if I hadn't had the unmitigated gall to charge a whopping $25 (later $10) for registration (even though you had the source already with your initial download). Geez, did I make any money off that? Only... oh, nearly $2,000, hey not bad. I liked Perl for quick and dirty stuff. I never really liked Perl as a higher-level language. Perl's wacky combination of assembler-like looseness ("want your parameters? UNPACK THEM YOURSELF") and APL obtuseness ("pick the right punctuation mark or DIE") never sat well with me. PHP is a great relief from the latter. And I gather Perl 6 is moving away from that as well, but probably stuck in the mud of being too much like Ruby and Python to bother with.
1994–
1995–
This is the language I learned to program in, and despite its highly write-only nature, I will always like it.
1995–2000
I have not touched Perl since discovering Python and, to some degree, PHP.
1995–
Have written a few CGI script handlers in Perl, but it's an absolutely vile language. Its main purpose seems to be to keep Larry Wall's ego inflated - his book on Perl is filled with page after page of "see how much smarter than you I am" for being able to write Perl code that can navigate a toaster to Jupiter in only 2 lines and uses only obscure punctuation symbols.
1995–
Used it for cgi-bin scripts in a weather app I wrote ( SGI graphics, web UI ).
1995–
I was called crazy by everyone I met who had a job in software for obsessing about Perl 4. I still don't know how I found it or how it found me. Now people call me crazy for obsessing about Perl 6.
1995–1997
self learned, did some scripts with it, didn't really appreciate the language until i got more proficient at shell usage years after i stopped using perl
1995–
Wrote the first Swig modules for both Perl 4 and Perl 5. Wouldn't say that I'm fluent, but I still use it every now and then--mainly to maintain some wiki software that's written in Perl.
1995–
Only began teaching myself Perl 4 from the "Learning Perl" book when I found it too difficult to implement associative arrays in /bin/sh
1995–2002
1995–
1995–1997
1995–2000
1996–
Perl5, mostly for text processing and not for web use. Still use it, mostly where I've gotta maintain some existing project.
1996–
That's the linguist part of me, hey Larry, I do more of a One Trivial Way To Do It
1996–
1996–2007
1996
1996–
The second best...evar!
1996–1997
1996–
1997–2010
1997–
Learned for a consulting job. Still write at least one 1-liner every day.
1997–
1997–
1997–2000
Never really learnt this - but pretty much all self-hosted scripts (remember the term "CGI Script?") at the time were in Perl.
1998–2003
My first dynamic-language love. I remember in college taking a look at an mbox-parser a friend was struggling for hours to write in C and telling him "I could do that in Perl in ten minutes." He called the challenge; I locked my door and had it done in 9:37. Haven't used it much since I found Python.
1998–
My programming mother tongue. I ate up that Perl For Dummies book I bought at Barns & Noble in Federal Way, Washington! First project? RuterSearch: http://weston.ruter.net/projects/rutersearch/ I still use Perl a lot of text processing and for various system utilities. PHP has replaced Perl for web development, which I hope to replace with Python ASAP.
1998–2001
1998–
Use it when it is the right tool for the job. Implemented a B2B ordering system for a company internship while in college.
1998–2000
For a while there I was seduced by the dark side, but she doesn't know how to treat you right.
1998–
1998–
I started programming in Perl, was hopelessly devoted to it for years.
1998–2001
Perl & CGI. Yeehaw!
1998–
1998–1999
1998–2009
Started with the camel book back in the days of CGI. Revisited Perl in a big way for building major database-backed web applications at Rentrak. It helps to have source filters which make it so you don't have to shift your arguments off of @_.
1998–2000
1999–
Used it on and off since 1999, first at University and then on random projects since. Probably stop using it and move to Python or something else soon.
1999
Dabbled with Perl. Loved the regular expressions but revisiting my work months later made me realize a flaw of regex. Or perhaps I just wrote spaghetti code?
1999–2002
1999–
Ah, the old aptly titled swiss army chainsaw. The first truly agile language I've ever learned. Coming from C to Perl was like going from a match to a flame thrower. Probably not the best choice for large applications, but that never stopped me. I still use Perl to tear through text but not much else these days.
1999–2002
Perl was the first "real" programming language that I learned. I wrote a bunch of CGI applications for a web site that I worked on... stuff like guestbooks, forums, and rudimentary databases backed by flat files.
1999–2001
2 years too much. See also Java.
2000–2007
My language of choice when I majored in computational linguistics, but switched to Python a few years ago and am even happier now...:-D
2000–
2000–
Still roxors for regex! I used perl as a regex generator to edit 10K+ login scripts.
2000–
2000–2002
2000–2004
Black days. Enjoyed the switch from Bash to Perl but finally I ended up going to the dark side of his magic.
2000–2001
Taught myself Perl while studying - worked on a project to provide a Perl based platform for converting ASP based "commerce server" applications across to Perl (replicated the whole commerce server pipeline etc.)
2000–
2000–2005
One of my favorite languages. The first "scripting" language that I used because I was learning Linux and what else was there in the late 90's? Since have moved on to Python.
2000
2000–
2000–2006
2001–2002
2001–
2001–2002
2001–
2001–2005
Learned it in one evening spent with the Camel book trying to build a Pig Latin web filter. Still holds a soft spot in my heart.
2001–
graduated, and became a perl programmer straight away
2001–2003
Needed perl for work. Once I found python, I never touched perl again.
2001–2005
2001–2005
2001–
2002–2004
My language of choice for more complicated scripts, abandoned if for python.
2002
Played with it a little for building server side web apps for an early web page. Hate it with a passion.
2002–
2002–
After doing a lot of VBScript (ASP, VB6, etc.), I fell in love with Perl's raw power and efficiency. The regex integration is fantastic, and nothing beats it for one-liners to process text files. Throw it in the mix with a bunch of piped-together Unix commands for a remarkably powerful impromptu parser.
2002–
2002–
2002–
2002–2004
2002–
2003–
Did a bit of Perl programming for a company. Mostly small scripts and web crawlers.
2003–
Merely flirted and wrote a few scripts.
2003
Just for one project. Loved the community, though.
2003
First scripting language. Messed up my brain badly. But I love it for that. Had to quit though. It was not Perl, it was me. I was not ready for it.
2003–
2003–2009
Had to use it for $work. Liked it at first, then found Python. Haven't looked back.
2003–
2003
2003–
First job doing web applications and it's been a part of each job following.
2003–2008
2003–
2004–2007
Did a bit of scripting and text processing. Regex and CPAN are great but I never got use to Perl magical syntax. I definitly replaced Perl with Python.
2004–
All hackers use perl! Was turned off by all the single character text operators, but I got over it. Yep, it's the 800-pound swiss army chain saw of programming languages. Who needs other tools if they've got perl?
2004–
2004–
2005
Too much cryptic, will not touch it again.
2005–
Great in the right hands, horrible in the wrong ones (just like any other language I guess).
2005–2007
2005
2005–2006
2005–2007
You'll like Perl 'til you meet Python.
2006–2008
Used for several big projects in my first programming job, so it became my go-to scripting language whenever I gave up on plain shell scripts (i.e. every time I started anything in Bash).
2006–
2006–2010
2007–
2007–
2007–
Never properly learned Perl until I needed it at work one day. I very quickly noticed that my own (novice) code was more compact and clear than any of the PHP I'd ever written. My first clue that my gut feelings about PHP were right.
2007
2008–2009
Used for scripting while in a strict corporate IT environment that blocked the use of Python.
2008–
USING CATALYST FRAMEWORK TO BUILD POWERFUL WEB APPLICATIONS QUICKLY, EFFICIENTLY WHILE FOLLOWING BEST PRACTICES.
2008
Took a couple of classes with Perl in University. I liked it, but it is a bit primitive compared to other modern languages. don't use it anymore.
2008–
Wrote some text processing scripts for a linux box, much prefer python.
2008–
2008–
Wrote a translator for a packet stuffing language while working for a networking company. My brain still hurts.
2008–2009
2008–
Hooray for regular expressions! I'm still in the process of learning this. OOP in Perl feels weird, though.
2008–
2009–
2009–2010
Learnt Perl to maintain a bunch of scripts at work.
2009–
Wanted to learn it before, but discouraged by others saying it resembled "line noise". After finally trying it, it's safe to say that Perl is actually quite readable yet compact if one takes the right approach. I like it.
2009–
2009–
2010–
I'm still learning it.
2010–
2010–
I THINK THAT WAS MY FRIST LANGUAGE FOR WEB DEVELOPMENT.
lots of stuffs
Great syntax, very powerful.
Yeah, I still like the language (cept for pre-Moose OO) and the stuff in CPAN,

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