Mastering Perl
Creating professional programs with Perl
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: July 2007
Pages: 346

This is the third in O'Reilly's series of landmark Perl tutorials, which started with Learning Perl, the bestselling introduction that taught you the basics of Perl syntax, and Intermediate Perl, which taught you how to create re-usable Perl software. Mastering Perl pulls everything together to show you how to bend Perl to your will. It convey's Perl's special models and programming idioms.

This book isn't a collection of clever tricks, but a way of thinking about Perl programming so you can integrate the real-life problems of debugging, maintenance, configuration, and other tasks you encounter as a working programmer.

The book explains how to:

  • Use advanced regular expressions, including global matches, lookarounds, readable regexes, and regex debugging
  • Avoid common programing problems with secure programming techniques
  • Profile and benchmark Perl to find out where to focus your improvements
  • Wrangle Perl code to make it more presentable and readable
  • See how Perl keeps track of package variables and how you can use that for some powerful tricks
  • Define subroutines on the fly and turn the tables on normal procedural programming.
  • Modify and jury rig modules to fix code without editing the original source
  • Let your users configure your programs without touching the code
  • Learn how you can detect errors Perl doesn't report, and how to tell users about them
  • Let your Perl program talk back to you by using Log4perl
  • Store data for later use in another program, a later run of the same program, or to send them over a network
  • Write programs as modules to get the benefit of Perl's distribution and testing tools
Appendices include "brian's Guide to Solving Any Perl Problem" to improve your troubleshooting skills, as well as suggested reading to continue your Perl education. Mastering Perl starts you on your path to becoming the person with the answers, and, failing that, the person who knows how to find the answers or discover the problem.
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Mastering Perl: at least a three (3) step process

By joshSVUG

from Undisclosed

Comments about oreilly Mastering Perl:

The journey to mastering Perl requires at least three (3) steps :)

One optional route would be to read:

1) Learning Perl

2) Intermediate Perl, and finally

3) Mastering Perl

brian d foy mentions in his introduction and appendix A that the path to mastery involves learning from many people, and to learn from brian is an advantage. Appendix A is a list of Further Reading and by following up on many of these compounds the effect of the book. You get the bang for your buck.

Chapter 3 on Secure Programming Techniques is helpful because it places the topic front and center. This topic should find its way downstream into Learning Perl to encourage secure programming as early as possible.

I found immediate value in the chapters on benchmarking, profiling (especially DBI profiling) and logging. The chapters on Cleaning Up Perl (chapter 7: perltidy and de-obfuscation) and Configuring Perl (chapter 11: dealing with switches) are a great recap of material critical for "creating professional programs with Perl".

PS _ My personal route to mastering Perl had a required stop at "Programming the Perl DBI".

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