Friday, September 14, 2007

Perl News 13 Sep 2007

Interview Audio

Welcome to Perlcast. This is your host, Randal Schwartz with another round of Perl news.

Let's kick things off with a little conference and workshop news.

YAPC::Europe 2007 has released some conference videos on YouTube under the tag 'yapceu07'. There are only a few videos posted right now, but expect more to follow.

Of course, YAPC::Europe 2007 isn't the only YAPC to release videos recently. YAPC::Europe 2002 have posted videos from the Munich conference on YouTube under the tag 'yapceu02'. Of course, the 2002 organizers have a pretty good excuse for just now posting their videos... the conference was held three years before the existence of YouTube!

Since we are on the topic of videos, I might as well mention that the Teach-In videos can now be found on at There are videos for each of the four sessions available. Be warned that the audio on the last session cuts out near the end due to technical difficulties at the teach-in.

Enough about past events, let's move on to what is on the horizon.

First a reminder that the Pittsburgh Perl Workshop is just around the corner. The workshop will be held on October 13-14, 2007 at the University Center on Carnegie Mellon University's Oakland campus. And, don't forget that in addition to the workshop, there will be a "From Zero To Perl," a special course for programmers new to the Perl programming language. There is an additional registration fee of $65 to take this course. Please select either the "Regular + From Zero To Perl" or "Student + From Zero To Perl" options when registering. Seating in this course is limited so register today before it's too late!

Next, for those brave souls with thick coats, the Minneapolis Perl Mongers have announced a one-day Perl workshop to be held on February 16th, 2008. The workshop is appropriately named Frozen Perl and will be an all-day workshop held at the University of Minnesota. More information can be found at, as well as, a link the Frozen Perl's call for speakers. The theme of the workshop is "Perl in Practice". If you want to take a shot at being a speaker, submit your abstract soon.

In YAPC news, Copenhagen, Denmark has been selected to host YAPC::Europe 2008. Copenhagen faced stiff competition from Braga, Portugal and the Informatics department of Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute in Cambridge, United Kingdom. Though the Wellcome Trust didn't win the bid, their submission marks the first from a non-Perlmonger group. has hosted several Nordic Perl Workshops and is expected to pull together a wonderful conference. Congratulations

We'll wrap up the social Perl news by welcoming a new PM group to the mix. is getting started with an inaugural meeting on tentatively set for the 7th December. doesn't seem to running yet but there is a mailing list. You can find the link at (

On a slightly more technical slant, there have been a few update on CPAN search has added gravatar icons to author pages so that CPAN users can make a human connection to the people behind the code that thye are using. CPAN authors can add their own gravatar by signing up to using their CPAN email alias. Also, search results now display module ratings from This allows for searches to quickly get an idea of which modules might work best for them.

While on the topic of CPAN, the PAUSE administrators recently put out an important announcement. They are planning to do a little house keeping on the CPAN Modules List. They intend to remove old namespace reservations which have been registered with the modules mailing list but for which there never has been an actual implementation on CPAN. This will apply to all unused registrations from May 2007 and earlier. The admins will send an email to every PAUSE author who has an unused namespace asking them to contact the modules-at-perl-dot-org mailing list about the issue. Registrants have until December, at which time the namespaces will then be made available again. If you've registered a namespace and haven't used it, be sure to watch your inbox.

CPAN Testers have started an IRC discussion channel since the #cpantesters channel has gotten a little noisy due to smoke reports. Now testers can have conversations on #cpantesters-discuss at

You've seen the 'digg it' links on people's websites and news stories. What about Perl-related stores? Is there an easy way to have people submit your post as a story to Now there is. Visit to grab the two lines of JavaScript that make the majic happen. The submitter doesn't need to have an account on, but people with an account can add a description of the story they'd like to submit.

Believe it or not, Fall is here and it is time for the Fall 2007 issue of The Perl Review. In it's fourth year of print publication, the magazine has a new design that packs in more Perl into the same number of pages of older addtions. In this issue: Templating My Output -- Alberto Simões; Making My Own CPAN -- brian d foy; Programming Parrot: NCI -- Jonathan Scott Duff; Komodo Test Drive -- Jim Brandt; Named Captures in Perl 5.10 -- brian d foy; and much more.

The Perl Foundation has awarded a grant to Shlomi Fish to create a reusable parser for the syntax of MediaWiki, the popular open-source wiki engine that powers sites such as Wikipedia and Wikiquote. The deliverables of the grant are a CPAN module and a Kwiki plugin for using this MediaWiki syntax in Kwiki wikis, enabling people to create Perl projects that can parse its syntax and create compatible wikis. This grant is a second for Shlomi, who successfully completed a grant for XML::RSS improvements earlier this year.

If you want to contribute to the Perl community and get paid for it, consider proposing a grant to The Perl Foundation. If you would like to contribute and have no idea what to do, check out TPF's grant suggestions on their website.

Do you have a reasonably connected server with a static IP address? If so, you might be eligible to join the NTP Pool. The CPU requirements for ntpd are so small that you will hardly realize that it's there and with that small bit of CPU, you'll be helping millions of computer users around the world. In addition, if you are able to setup a GPS antenna then you can apply for free GPS devices. More information can be found at

exuberant ctags 5.7 is out with improved Perl support including support for 'package' keyword, multi-line subroutine, package, and constant definitions, optional subroutine declarations, formats, and much more. ctags is easy to use and is easy for module authors to add targets for in their distributions.

There have been a few Perl books released recently. At OSCON, brian foy's "Mastering Perl" came hot off the press. Now, Stas Bekman and Jim Brandts "mod_perl2 User's Guide" was just been published by Onyx Neon. Look for a book giveaway soon at

And finally, is a social networking site for open source projects. There are a few Perl-based projects out there waiting for reviews and others that need to be submitted. Check out and get a slightly different look at the open source projects that you use every day.