[TUHS] Book Recommendation [ reallly inscrutable languages ]

arnold at skeeve.com arnold at skeeve.com
Fri Nov 19 05:03:59 AEST 2021

Paul Ruizendaal via TUHS <tuhs at minnie.tuhs.org> wrote:

> Here’s another angle on Perl, perhaps more on topic for TUHS. Let’s
> accept for a minute that Perl filled the void between C and shell scripts,
> and that there was a latent need for a scripting language like this
> on Unix.
> The shell, awk, sed, etc. had arrived at more or less fully formed
> versions by 1980. Perl (and TCL) did not appear until the very end of
> the 1980’s. What filled the gap in that decade, if anything?

Nothing. It was the need for filling the gap that engendered Perl.
Remember that Perl 1 through Perl 3 were around durinig the 80s; Perl 4
sort of settled in for a longer time.

"New" awk didn't get out of the labs until 1987/1988, and that was only
via SVR3.2 and/or the AT&T Toolchest; it wasn't open source, nor
did it provide access to many of the needed system calls in the way
that Perl did.

Also remember that there were plenty of people who were happy working
with the shell and the Unix toolkit as-is.


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