Perl Power Tools v0.14: Why?

Here's why we're doing it:

  1. Laziness: I'm tired of wasting my life trying to cobble together make-shift work-arounds to do the job of fundamental tools that are broken or absent on systems various and sundry. And if it's hard on me, imagine the poor guys on systems I must charitably refer to as tool-challenged, those lacking even these most fundamental of programmer tools.
  2. Impatience: I get more than a bit impatient when someone has some simple problem that can be trivially done using one or three basic commands, but when I tell them how to do it, they whinge about not being on a proper Unix system and how they therefore can't do the obvious thing.
  3. Hubris: It's listed last, but this is the most important reason -- simply being able to say that we did it. Why do we climb mountains? Why do we learn to ski? Because it's there, and because it's fun!

Not only can most basic commands be implemented using just a wee bit of Perl code, once these have been done, they're automatically much more powerful and more robust than the old versions. No more line-too-long errors. No more fixed-buffer problems. Any pattern matching is automatically turbo-charged. While we don't expect anyone to replace a functioning /bin (if they have one), these should make good example Perl programs.

Here's my original notice to the Perl development team announcing the project.