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This text provides an introduction to the Perl programming language and its culture. This third edition has been expanded to cover Version 5.6 of Perl. New topics include threading, the compiler, and Unicode.
Larry Wall is the inventor of Perl. He has also authored some other popular free programs available for Unix, including the rn news reader and the ubiquitous patch program. By training, Larry is actually a linguist, having wandered about both U.C. Berkeley and U.C.L.A. as a grad student. Over the course of years, he has spent time at Unisys, JPL, NetLabs, and Seagate, playing with everything from discrete event simulators to network-management systems, with the occasional spacecraft thrown in. It was at Unisys, while Larry was trying to glue together a bicoastal configuration management system over a 1200 baud encrypted link using a hacked-over version of Netnews, that Perl was born. Larry currently works for O'Reilly & Associates. Tom Christiansen is a freelance consultant specializing in Perl training and writing. Tom has been involved with Perl since day zero of its initial public release in 1987. Lead author of The Perl Cookbook, co-author of Programming Perl, Learning Perl, and Learning Perl on Win32 Systems, Tom is also the major caretaker of Perl's online documentation. He holds undergraduate degrees in computer science and Spanish and a master's in computer science. He now lives in Boulder, Colorado. Jon Orwant is chief technology officer of O'Reilly & Associates and editor-in-chief of The Perl Journal. He holds a Ph.D. from the MIT Media Laboratory and is co-author of O'Reilly's Mastering Algorithms with Perl.