This Week on Perl 6 (3 -9 Mar 2002)


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Perl 6 is the major redesign and rewrite of the Perl language. Parrot is the virtual machine that Perl 6 (and other languages) will be written for. For more information on the Perl 6 and Parrot development efforts, visit and

Last week was extremely light, with just 70 messages across 34 threads, and 29 authors contributing.


Uri Guttman cross-posted a thread discussing redesigning printf. Since % will now be used for all hash accesses, there’s a potential ambiguity between interpolating a hash key, and a format specifier. Several solutions were presented, including requiring $() for interpolation, a new quote operator, and replacing the % with something else. The discussion continues.

Parrot 0.0.4

The latest version of Parrot is being wrapped up. The big feature of this release is the foundation of the garbage collector. A formal release announcement will be made, well, when this version is formally released.

Multimethod Dispatch

Michael Lambert asked whether Parrot itself should support multimethod dispatch. Internals head Dan Sugalski affirmed that it would, but only for method and subroutine dispatch. (As with most design decisions, it’s a speed thing.)

The Assembler PDD

Simon Cozens released version 1 of the proposed Assembler PDD.

The Parrot Spotlight

Alex Gough is a physics student at Oxford with interests ranging from quantum computing to DNA simulation. He uses perl to do more in less time and hopes Parrot and Perl 6 will allow cheaper, shorter, one-line solutions to troublesome but otherwise irrelevant problems. He works on the big number and testing framework of Parrot.

When not at his computer, Alex canoes on foamy rivers, teaches basic lifeguarding, and helps mentally disabled children exercise.

Bryan C. Warnock



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