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Perl News: Perl 6 To Be Complete Rewrite (But Not What You Think)

Jul 19, 2000, 22:12 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Chris Nandor)

"Larry Wall and other active Perl porters and Perl helpers met on Tuesday afternoon at Perl Conference 4.0 and mapped out a what is planned to become a complete rewrite of Perl that will become Perl 6 in 18 to 24 months, with a prerelease targeted for next year's conference."

"Perl 5 will not be abandoned, but will primarily be concerned with bugfixes both major and minor."

"The meeting for members of the perl5-porters mailing list was the result of an earlier, smaller meeting of Wall, Nathan Torkington, Chip Salzenberg, and others who basically decided that Perl needed to be fixed in certain ways, and that a rewrite was the best way to do it. Salzenberg started the Topaz project two years ago, to reimplement Perl in C++. Though Topaz itself will not be the basis for Perl 6, Salzenberg noted that the lessons learned in the experience will be very helpful to the new effort."

"Torkington led the three-hour meeting, starting off by saying what was wrong with Perl. Much of the focus on the problems with Perl centered around how increasingly difficult it was to improve, extend, and embed Perl. A rewrite and redesign are needed, he said, and maybe it is time for a hard change. So while the focus of the effort seems to be on improving the Perl guts and API, the project will also be used as an opportunity to clean out some of the cruft, including bad and seldom-used features."

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