Re: "Perl is the duct tape of the Internet" and other musings

Clover Hodgson (
Thu, 9 Jul 1998 09:54:54 -0700


>Perl is neat to code in, after being sunk in Java for the last longest
>while. There's a great article about Perl, which looks at
>scripting languages vs. systems
>languages, the pros/cons of typing, and other topics. Coauthored
>by Tim O'Reilly at
>That cute but apt subject line is a quote from the O'Reilly article,
>itself quoted from "Hassan Schroeder, Sun's first webmaster".
>Also, Perl, and its role as "Internet duct tape", are easing
>my mind about the one nagging problem I've always had with
>viewing the web in the same light as a distributed object
>infrastructure: that Turing completeness thing. HTML, XML, RDF,
>all that stuff is great. But where do you finally, actually,
>express behaviour? In that sense, I'm still not a 'karmakid'
>in the sense of Adam & Rohit and their 'data reverse salients'.
>Perl helps sets my mind at ease about web+code.


Yes, I agree with you. Perl is cool. I'm learning to write it, too, but
with no background in programming, it will take me a little while longer.
I specify the use of Perl in all my projects though, unless the client is
hell-bent on something else. (i.e. those corporate mongers you mentioned
that insist on namebrand stuff.)

>The most promising exception seemed to be PostgreSQL


>Anyone with any experience or opinions on any of this?
>How does Linux+Apache+Perl+PostgreSQL sound as a middle & backend
>tiered server combo?
>modPerl lets Perl scripts run right inside Apache
>as opposed to via CGI forking, and Perl DBI presumably
>can be hooked up directly to PostgreSQL. So the whole
>thing should just be humming, right? And, not a lick
>of commercial-license code anywhere to be seen.

In my opinion, you are correct. We (Dave Crook & I) used this on a project
and it ran great until they got some NT-happy (no offense) webmaster in
there who took it all down to do his own thing. It was a very information
heavy site with lots of searching and automation. We used Postgres for the
backend (Dave, worked his magic) and we used perl with embedded HTML to run
it. I can honestly say it's one of the better projects I worked on. Dave
can give you more insight to it. I was the project manager.

Clover Hodgson
19311 McLaren Lane Huntington Beach, CA 92646
(714) 965-0667 fax (714)965-8887