For what feels like an eternity I developed in Perl 5, and I still write a few small programs in it. Professionally I have moved to a different layer so there I don’t have much use for Perl.
But I’ve followed the development of Perl as it is a versatile language and I like the syntax and ease. So I was pleased to see the announcement of Perl 7.
Well, I was pleased to see that the announcement that Perl 7 is going to be, basically, the latest Perl 5 (5.32) but with different defaults. Because one of the things that Perl has done really well is backwards compatibility – Perl 5 was basically code-compatible with Perl 4.036 and so on.
And it makes sense to draw a line in the sand and say, from this point forward we are doing it this way. While making it possible to run the old code.
I remember when Chip Salzenberg announced his Topaz-project, a rewrite of Perl 5, back in the very old days, and I was very enthusiastic about Perl 6 when Larry Wall announced it. Perl 6 was to be different from previous versions and took a very long time to materialise. And when it did, Perl 5 had moved on so Perl 6 became Raku. There are some very cool features in Raku, and in the fashion of the Perl community, many of those have been ported back into Perl 5.
I still like Perl and I expect to continue to use it in the future.