Is it necessary to learn Perl?

Discussion in 'Perl' started by MarkW, Aug 17, 2006.

  1. MarkW

    MarkW Guest

    I hope this is the correct place to post this:
    I am developing a web site for a e-commerce business I will be
    running. The site I'm setting up will be 50% store, 50% content. I'm
    not sure which shopping cart I'll be using yet (am looking at
    os-commerce and miva) but the other part will be content. I will be
    writing reviews of products, articles on the industry, and someday may
    have some blogging and forums and advertising.
    As for perl, years ago I looked at writing web pages. I never did it
    but remember back thing perl was the big thing. it was used for CGi
    scripts. is it still used a lot? I seem to read about PHP a lot now.
    Has that replaced Perl and are CGI Scripts still used?
     
    MarkW, Aug 17, 2006
    #1
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  2. MarkW

    MarkW Guest

    I have to add that I am not much into programming and I want a good
    web site but most of all what is important to me is ease of use and a
    easy to update web page. I will be using Macromeda Studio 8 to
    develop it (dreamweaver and flash)
     
    MarkW, Aug 17, 2006
    #2
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  3. MarkW wrote:

    > I have to add that I am not much into programming and I want a good
    > web site but most of all what is important to me is ease of use and a
    > easy to update web page. I will be using Macromeda Studio 8 to
    > develop it (dreamweaver and flash)


    Wimp. You should be hard-coding your website in raw HTML. :)

    Just kidding.

    There are even better ways to maintain websites, using one of the many CMS
    technologies out there.

    Check out Joomla and Drupal for starters.

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    -- Edmond Dantes, CMC
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    Edmond Dantes, Aug 18, 2006
    #3
  4. MarkW

    Jamie Guest

    In <>,
    MarkW <> mentions:
    > I have to add that I am not much into programming and I want a good
    >web site but most of all what is important to me is ease of use and a
    >easy to update web page. I will be using Macromeda Studio 8 to
    >develop it (dreamweaver and flash)


    I wouldn't say "required". One thing to watch out for (and I know this because
    I've been asked to move in and fixup/add other scripts) in the land of PHP
    there are a lot of really nice looking packages and scripts.

    Unfortunately, these are sometimes written by web designers who, while really
    good at graphic design and layout, aren't always the best at watching security
    issues.

    I've seen stuff like this:

    $sql = "SELECT foo from bar where id=" . $_GET['id'];

    Actually written by cheap freelance places who place the lowest bid on contracts.

    If you can't see the problem in the above statement, don't worry, you're
    not the only one. :) (but do check into it, it's a common problem.)

    The sad thing is, programs/scripts that do that look really sharp and
    professional on the outside. They were written by people who are excellent web
    designers first and programmers second. (or people who charge way under what it
    should cost and need to crank out stuff really really quick to make their
    profit, I guess if you find someone who'll do a $500 project for $45.00, you
    get what you deserve.)

    Perl I think tends to attract more people who are interested in the programming
    side of things. In perl, you'd use place holders for the above case, which is
    a lot more secure. (and, depending on database.. much faster) Also, perl has
    mod_perl which can in many cases, run faster then php. (since you can keep data
    structures around in mod_perl, can't do that in PHP w/out buying special stuff.)

    You won't find a $3.95 hosting provider that supports mod_perl though...

    PHP saves you the fork() so it appears to run faster than perl, but, I've seen
    perl CGI scripts actually run faster then PHP, because they were written with
    speed in mind. (for example, in CGI land, you load only what is needed for a
    given request, that speeds things up a LOT. Unfortunately the opposite is true
    for mod_perl) PHP5 has autoload stuff, but it's on a pr. class basis and is
    quite difficult to design for.

    To keep things sane, PHP usually ends up loading more than required for a given
    request. This can cost you the time you saved by avoiding the fork() call in
    the first place. (this is typically done for EACH request)

    The lack of fork() calls is often cited as the reason PHP is so great, it's
    blown out of proportion and anyway a lot of the PHP5 hosts actually DO fork to
    maintain backward compatibility with PHP 4.n. (modern unix hosts anyway.. have
    shared memory with copy-on-write systems, meaning that if the perl binary is running
    some place else, the fork overhead isn't so bad)

    I do think PHP is easier to work in though, too easy in many cases.

    I like PHP for content management because it's sooo simple. The ideal content
    manager is PHP + CVS. Let the filesystem handle "content management". PHP
    is excellent for that.

    Fortunately, perl has a lot of really flexible template systems.

    Unfortunately, perl has a lot of really flexible template systems.

    The standard template system of PHP combined with it's relative ease of use (for simple
    things anyway) is probably why it's been so successful. That and all the hype
    over not forking a process.

    Main reason for using PHP is because everyone else is.

    Jamie
    --
    http://www.geniegate.com Custom web programming
    (rot13) User Management Solutions
     
    Jamie, Aug 22, 2006
    #4
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