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What do you think? Will php ever have the full (or does it already) funtionality that Perl has?
I use REBOL for most of my CGI work. If PERL is duct tape, REBOL is a shirt-pocket powertool.
But language choices are highly personal things, so let's not slip into a war about the "best" -- the best available is what you can use the best.
As for popularity in the web developer community, i think PHP either is or will become the most popular. It's fairly easy to learn and more "tightly" structured than Perl and it's also a very rich environment (for web development) so i guess that many web developers will never have the need to explore Perl's possibilities.
IMHO, Perl will continue to be the most powerful scripting tool although other languages might be(come) more popular.
I've not had much exposure to perl - is it a better language for doing this? Are there any advantages to using perl on the command line, rather than php? What makes perl more powerful than php for this kind of work?
Thanks in advance!
PHP and ASP are languages that some hosts have decided that you need to pay extra to get the translators/compilers for, and if you have a cash strapped client....dropping back to Perl can sometimes save them a few $$$$ (particularly if they already have a host they like - it can save them from upgrading).....
But one area where I think PHP is winning over Perl bigtime is documentation. As a reference nothing beats php.net/manual/en/ IMO. If I don't know how do something in PHP it never takes more than a few minutes - tops - to find out. Examples and all. Could be me, but with Perl it seems to turn into a quest.
Has quite some libs, can be written in HTAG, delphi, c or others. XML lib, email functions has it'S own file based DB engine for when mySQL is notavailable, caching DB middleware..
and so on and so on... needless to say I wrote it myself and you'Re not getting it ;)
On the minus, it's buggy and sometimes cumbersome, as I evolved the syntax, not designed it... but I can change anythign I don't like at any time ;)
So keep your pearl and php ;)
Here's another question: which language is fastest? Is PHP faster than Perl or Mod Perl?
Can anyone recommend a book or resource for someone who's never touch perl to use to get started in learning to script with perl (on the server-side)?
There lies the problem. We are not in the US. And we don't want to host in the US. We want a UK IP address and there are are a few hosts over here that want more money for ASP or PHP support by forcing you to take a higher spec account. Don't get me wrong, but I don't want to pay for 100Mb of space when I am only using 1Mb for a small dynamic site and 20Mb is more than enough (but doesn't support PHP or ASP!). Which means that someone can be paying an extra 25% for PHP/ASP support!
I think perl is best for pure text handling, and PHP is best for database handling.
I use both perl and PHP from the command line. Personally I think perl is easier to work with for most tasks, but PHP is growing on me :)
It's sometimes sad to see developers who are smart and experienced enought to understand Perl, still fighting with PHP for years, not knowing what they are missing.
PHP is just the VB of web development. Nothing less, nothing more.