I would say no, but the focus might be shifting away form web and towards administration/security. I have started to look at peal as a tool for administration and if you are in the security business you will se that many exploits are written en peal. One of the most important tools in vulnerability analysis is Nessus. All Nessus plug-ins are written in pseudo peal (they call it something else, I donít remember what) and you need to be able to intrepid this code in order to validate the vulnerabilities
I'd say that for the web, perl is being used much less - asp and php being much more popular.
But for admin or file manipulation scripts I'd say its as popular as it ever was. But given I'm writing some perl at the moment, I'd have to say that ;-)
It may be less that the demand for Perl has decreased than that the supply of Perl coders has risen to met the demand. You typically see more ads demanding newer technologies, because firms are scrambling to find people with those skills.
For my current job, for example, Perl wasn't mentioned any time before I was hired, but nevertheless I use it frequently, both for munging text and maintaining CGI sites.
When I moved to my current job I inherited a Perl website so much of my day-to-day work involves writing, amending and troubleshooting Perl/CGI scripts. I'm in the NGO sector and many sites that have NOT been redesigned in the last 2 years still use Perl. Our site is being redesigned and the language of choice? PHP! So I think as websites are upgraded/redesigned, then Perl will be used less and less on websites at least.
yes php is rasing above perl
but perl is still just as good if you ask me
i still focus on perl only
Speaking of web development, today Perl is certaintly not mainstream. It is, however, still the platform choice for high-end sites based on open-source software. Perl's flexibility and reusable components arsenal only start to pay off in solutions that are fairly complex, or non-trivial, which doesn't exactly describe the majority of sites out there.
The rise of so many adequate frameworks in the web arena has taken some focus off of perl.
I still find that I can do twice as much with half as much code with perl. And I don't have to jump through any hoops to see my regexes do what I intend them to.
As far as general day to day data munging....this is what perl is for. I believe that the web popularity of perl was a side issue for the hard core perl gurus. (no claim of perl guruism)
Practical Extraction and Reporting Language.
This is exactly what I still use perl for. Just now it's mostly scouring websites with LWP and extracting their content, then reporting it back to me.
Perl solves some problems that cannot be solved
using asp, for example, capturing url of the
PHP, ASP, JSP, CF and the like are tailor made for the web, where Perl is pretty much a Swiss Army Chainsaw.
Its the one tool in my "programmer's toolbox" I can fall back on when all else fails, and when I need to hack up something quick for the moment, or to write a script for administration or file manipulation that has to work in a heterogeneous environment.
Perl will decline somewhat on the web as more web-specific languages come and go, but it will never go away. It's too damn useful.
(It totally annoys the hoity-toity java programmers where I work that I've had to glue everything together with Perl on the back end... because it works, it's bulletproof, and I can hack out the needed utility/script in an afternoon that would take a couple weeks to get through Development, QA, and Deployment.)
I agree with DigitalSorceress.
Perl will never go away....it is as she says just too damn useful.