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3.6 out of 5 stars9
3.6 out of 5 stars
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on January 4, 2000
After reading the first four chapters, I decided to return the book. The more I read the book, the more frustrated I became. The flow of the book was very poorly designed. It has many catch-22 scenarios, that is, when you look up explanation of concept A, it assumes you know concept B fluently; and when explaining concept B, it assumes you know concept A. It spends very little explanation and no examples on difficult concepts and terminology, but elaborates liberally on simple concepts such as "switch". The typos are unbelievable and they seem to happen at the right place at the right time. For example, I was puzzled by the sentence "You can use the next method to see the random number generator". I said to myslef what is to see about the generator, must be something really special to Perl. Of course, it turns out that it is "seed" not "see". I quite after the first four chapters. The book may be excellent from chapter 5 on, but the first four chapters are convincing enough for me to get my hard earn money back.
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on April 5, 2000
After spending about 12 hours in Borders reading Perl reference books I finally decided on this one, and I do not regret my decision. This big book is by far the most thurough and easiest to follow Perl5 reference available. I have only one gripe about this book, and that I wish the Appendix contained Index page numbers. When I look something up in the Appendix I don't want to have to go to the Index to locate a page number for that item. But it's a minor inconvenience that I'm willing to live with. Otherwise this is a great book for anyone who already has a basic grasp of Perl syntax and needs a thurough yet easy-to-follow reference guide to help in more advanced programming.
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on February 5, 2000
I've never been a fan of very big books, I always think they've been padded out with extra information that shouldn't be there. But this one, it just isn't the case. It's got everything you need to know about Perl in here, right down from the basics of variables and syntax up to things like debugging and the Perl compiler. A lot of this stuff I've never seen before - even in the Perl documentation, and there are some great tips on using Perl for different jobs. My favorite has to be how you can use the Perl compiler to help optimize and clean your code - not by compiling, but just by looking at some of the output it gives. This one will be sat on my shelf for a long time.
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on January 12, 2000
The size of this book is immense, but it matches the available content. If you want to know the details of a Perl feature or extensions it's all contained in this book. The layout is a little odd, and you really need to know Perl to make the best use of the book. It's already saved me a few hours trawling through the Perl documentation - the book pointed me in the right direction on a script that wasn't working correctly. The inclusion of information on complex data structures and databases also helped me solve a few problems I'd had with another script that wasn't displaying information properly.
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on December 10, 1999
If you are not a heavily experienced PERL programmer and enjoy hacking other people's scripts, this is an excellent companion. This book makes it easy to look up just about any perl syntax you can dream up and it also gives examples of how the function is called. Not very usefull if you want to look up a function and you don't know what it is called, but if you want to understand whats going on behind the perl curtain I would recommend that you get this. Besides, it will look good on your shelf. Trust me.
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on March 26, 2000
I found this book to be an excellent reference for the type of Perl hacker who mostly figures things out for himself but still might end up trawling through the man pages alot. To be able to quickly browse to a subject that you have in black and white helps alot. I found the areas covering DBI and CGI lacking although, granted, that is not the aim of this publication. Strictly not to read from cover to cover but rather, to quickly look up a consice, detailed explanation of something.
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on August 19, 2000
I actually found this book in a bookstore while looking for Programming Perl. This book has an excellent reference section, with in-depth descriptions on everything. It is very well formatted. I don't know how good it is to learn from, but if you want a quick lookup reference this book is for you. Programming Perl provides the same information, but costs about $50.
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on June 14, 2001
I felt this book fell into the trap that many teaching books fall into - it assumes that the reader is at the same level as the author.
Don't get me wrong, it was a *very* useful book, but it could have been a lot clearer about many of the key issues.
For a beginner - don't buy this book. For an "advanced beginner", do =D
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on May 9, 2001
Apparently, this book is not for beginners. You will get lost if you try to learn perl by yourself. It may be a good reference book, I think, after I read the exhaustive listing of I/O variations.
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