Just Another Perl Hacker

RandalSchwartz used to sign off his usenet postings and email messages with ObfuscatedPerl that would print

    Just another Perl hacker,

after the perl interpreter got through with it. It has since grown into a favourite past-time of PerlHackers? to strain their knowledge of the language in both creating and trying to understand these bits of code. It's a nice way to have FunWithPerl.

JohnBeppu <beppu@lineo.com> - my first japh.

    package wuv'apqvjgt;($_=join('',(*PgtnHcemgt))) # print map "beppu\@$_\n", qw(
    =~ s/([HaP])(?!e)/ \U>$1/g;s/^.|:| (?=A)|>//g;y # cpan.org lbox.org binq.org
    /c-z/a-u/;print"J$_\n";#$^%$^X@.^ <!-- japh --> # lineo.com codepoet.org);

This human concept of "WUV" confuses and infuriates us!

If you've got a japh, feel free to add it to this page!

I've always found it fascinating that C and Perl programmers take such delight in ObfuscationContest?(s). This, as much of anything else, tells us about the cultural mindsets prevalent in this community.

I find it telling that there is no obfuscated CommonLisp contest, nor SmallTalk, EiffelLanguage, etc. Could users of these languages be more interested in solving difficult, real world problems instead?

I've always found writing clear C/C++ a challenge (and I don't think I've ever succeeded in writing really clear Perl, after many many years). Those language's emphasis on HeavySyntax? make the task of getting the program right difficult at the expense of the overarching design and problem being solved. I think that SyntaxConsideredHarmful? applies.

As our field mature, I think we will need to cease trying to impress each other by how many obscure exceptions to the language we can remember, and concentrate instead on solving difficult RealWorld Problem(s). In this respect, I think the development of PythonLanguage is a step in the right direction. --AlainPicard

''sorry for somewhat hijacking this page -- feel free to refactor this to another page.''

Not a problem, my friend.

To paraphrase LarryWall, the same thing that makes it possible to write really obfuscated code in PerlLanguage, is the same thing that allows one to write really beautiful code. Perl, to me, is freedom. As I program in it, I get the feeling that ThereIsNothingPerlCannotDo.

Of course, not every PerlProgrammer? is a FreedomLovingPerlPoet?. WithFreedomComesResponsibility? and there are many programmers who are not disciplined enough to wield this freedom effectively. Many people have faulted PerlLanguage for allowing this to happen, but I ask you -- can discipline really be enforced by a language? Is not the only true discipline SelfDiscipline ?

BadProgrammers will be BadProgrammers in any language. I have a friend who will take your beautiful PythonLanguage and make it his bitch. This is not a boast on my part -- I'm actually rather disturbed. My point is that writing code in PythonLanguage will not magically make my friend write beautiful code. --JohnBeppu

People have compared RubyLanguage to PythonLanguage in readability; one can write really good object-oriented code very clearly. And yet it's flexible enough that you can obfuscate the hell out of things if you so desire. It has some great features that contribute to this, like Perlish regexps, and C++ish overloaded operators. --NickBenesma?

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