Learning Perl, 3rd Edition
Making Easy Things Easy and Hard Things Possible
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Released: July 2001
Pages: 336

If you ask Perl programmers today what book they relied on most when they were learning Perl, you'll find that an overwhelming majority will name Learning Perl--also known affectionately as "the Llama." The first edition of Learning Perl appeared in 1993 and has been a bestseller ever since. Written by two of the most prominent and active members of the Perl community, this book is the quintessential tutorial for the Perl programming language.

Perl began as a tool for Unix system administrators, used for countless small tasks throughout the workday. It has since blossomed into a full-featured programming language on practically every computing platform, and is used for web programming, database manipulation, XML processing, and (of course) system administration--all this while still remaining the perfect tool for the small daily tasks it was designed for. Perl is quick, fun, and eminently useful. Many people start using Perl because they need it, but they continue to use Perl because they love it.

The third edition of Learning Perl has not only been updated for Perl 5.6, but has also been rewritten from the ground up to reflect the needs of programmers learning Perl today. Informed by their years of success at teaching Perl as consultants, the authors have re-engineered the book to better match the pace and scope appropriate for readers trying to get started with Perl, while retaining the detailed discussion, thorough examples, and eclectic wit for which the book is famous.

This edition of the Llama includes an expanded and more gently-paced introduction to regular expressions, new exercises and solutions designed so readers can practice what they've learned while it's still fresh in their minds, and an overall reworking to bring Learning Perl into the new millennium.

Perl is a language for getting your job done. Other books may teach you to program in Perl, but this book will turn you into a Perl programmer.

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oreillyLearning Perl, 3rd Edition
 
4.4

(based on 13 reviews)

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    (7)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (5)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

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Reviewed by 13 customers

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2.0

Not much learning value here

By Chuck

from Austin

About Me Developer, Sys Admin

Pros

  • Well-written

Cons

  • Not comprehensive enough
  • Not enough examples
  • Not Enough Exercises

Best Uses

    Comments about oreilly Learning Perl, 3rd Edition:

    I know RS is a perl god. But the fact is, when compared to other books aimed at teaching languages, this book falls short.

    It needs much more code, and much less exegesis. More examples, more exercises. More Perl. For example (Chapter 15), I don't need pages of talk before we even get to the first actual invocation of 'sort'. I mean, at that point, I'll just read the docs and get a comprehensive and detailed discussion there.

    There is also way too much Unix education in this book to my tastes. I already know Unix.

    Perhaps this book would be better suited to someone who knew less about coding than I do - but I can't imagine this book, or for that matter Perl itself, being suitable for someone in that category either.

    What I'd like to see is a book that shows and describes lots and lots of idiomatic Perl in a progressive, structured way. Perl is an extremely quirky language, and probably the most complex computer language out there. There are still times (plenty of them) when I see "expert" Perl code and do a double take. On these occasions I end up spending considerable time parsing what the heck is going on syntactically. A resource that saved me some of that time would really be a godsend.

    Bottom line: I got much more out of the man pages, perlmonks, Perl Cookbook, and the Camel Book.

    (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Best way to learn perl

    By Dan

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about oreilly Learning Perl, 3rd Edition:

    I own an older version but when I read it a couple years ago it was the only way I went from knowing no perl to having a good knowledge of perl.

    You should have some level of programming experience to use this book, but I think you can get it with some effort if not.

     
    4.0

    From Llama to Camel in one little book!

    By Robert Menes

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about oreilly Learning Perl, 3rd Edition:

    Every other book I've been through to learn Perl never got to the good points; by Eris, I wanted a book with some meat on it! Once I found Learning Perl for sale at my local used book store, I picked it up and started thumbing through it. While a few examples of code were a little confusing for me, this book made learning many of the fundamentals of Perl easy. It also spoke to me as if I were an intelligent, reasoning human, rather than belittling me or trying to throw scare tactics at me. Anyone who wishes to get started with Perl should pick up this book! All it takes is a little Llama to get you to be one with the Camel.

    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Great, but not so much for real beginners

    By Dan

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about oreilly Learning Perl, 3rd Edition:

    I do absolutely love this book and it helped me greatly, but I think it's important to realize the audience. If you have NO experience with programming anything, then you may want to get a better "beginner's programming" book. Having said that, I only know a little BASIC from several years ago and the book made perfect sense to me (after a few flashbacks).

    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Learning Perl, 3rd Edition Review

    By Jerry M. Howell II

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about oreilly Learning Perl, 3rd Edition:

    This book was wonderful. With a schoolbook approach it helps re-enforce the concepts you have learned. As a mater of fact, the fact that instructors use this book for those purposes is interesting. I throughly enjoyed this book and would recommend it to anyone serous about learning Perl.

    Jerry M. Howell II

    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Learning Perl, 3rd Edition Review

    By Roger Shanks

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about oreilly Learning Perl, 3rd Edition:

    O'Reilly is THE source for technical information. That withstanding, The 3'rd edition of Learning Perl took a step back from the second edition.

     
    4.0

    Learning Perl, 3rd Edition Review

    By Jarion Stevens

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about oreilly Learning Perl, 3rd Edition:

    Learning Perl is a must for anyone who wants to learn to program in perl. The excercises reinforce the reading material so you learn perl rather than just read about it. Another excellent book from O'Reilly.

    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Learning Perl, 3rd Edition Review

    By Bob Lucas

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about oreilly Learning Perl, 3rd Edition:

    Excellent book for beginning Perl. Needs a few more exercises per chapter, but they are concise and to the point. Go through this whole book, then get Programming Perl, and Perl in a Nutshell as a quick reference.

     
    4.0

    Learning Perl, 3rd Edition Review

    By some bloke in melbourne

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about oreilly Learning Perl, 3rd Edition:

    Pros: excellent introduction. Much hand-holding. No fear of missing the next step--the authors really teach their material very well.

    Cons: Much hand-holding. After two weeks I've finished the book and I know I'll never use it as a reference--I'll have to buy the Camel book for that. While Learning Perl is a very well-written introduction that teaches a new subject very well, the lack of larger, significant exercises/projects and the relatively small scope of the book leave me feeling that something was lacking from my rather expensive purchase. (O'Reilly books are bloody expensive here in Australia!)

    (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Learning Perl, 3rd Edition Review

    By Mike

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about oreilly Learning Perl, 3rd Edition:

    Like all O'Reilly books, stright to the point with

    no waste of paper.

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