No, it's not joke.
Then the "tragedy" statement applies.
I cannot argue with (shortened quote):
if ... would ... would ... would ... would ... could ..."
It is neither wrong nor right. It's not verifiable, and highly hypothetic (see quote). More hope than fact, actually. Sure, if all these would's and could's would be in place, you could hope that some early adopter would catch on.
So what? Then of course you'd hope that some kind of bootstrap process comes into existence, and the incoming adopters start to be less and less "early", until we have a Perl6 hype and girls start tearing of their shirts if they see a guy wearing a Perl6 T-shirt. Yeah. Why not? Phantasies are not illegal.
Unfortunately my estimate of the situation (and of your estimate of the situation) differs significantly. You completely/elegantly ignored the ROI topic I pointed to. You know - even todays early adopters aren't what they used to be. Significant amounts of early adopters - I mean. Sure, in todays worldwide IT-crowd counting tens of millions (possibly more) you will find a few die-hards that can adopt almost anything. If you hope for that, then I agree. Yes, that can happen.
But try to be honest to yourself. Do you really expect, that from this early adoption would come the kick-starter application, and interest, and a wider audience and wider contribution possibly even self-sustaining? As I wrote above: more hope than fact.
Please don't get me wrong. I too see Perl6 as promising. However, at the current moment I do not see anything of relevance being done to offer at least some Perl6 ROI. Not even for early adopters. (please do not confuse early adopters with temporary tryout hackers)
However, in my humblest opinion, that situation would radically change, 180°, if there was a Perl5 to Perl6 converter. Here I agree with your 90% estimate. Maybe even 80%. If it could automatically convert 80% of the pure-perl CPAN modules to Perl6 ... BINGO! You would:
- Have proof, that Perl5 and Perl6 are entangled sister projects that benefit each other
- Perl6 would benefit (huge surge of resources)
- Perl5 would benefit (opened migration path)
Until then, Perl6 is - and I would like to quote Richard Foley here - "Basically an excercise in academic masturbation". And I quote Richard here, because I do agree with him. As me the perl hacker, and me the upper management guy.
Why is such a converter not being done? Because it's hard I'm being told. Sorry. Before such a thing is not "in place" I - as a manager - cannot take Perl6 seriously. However, IF such a thing is in place, I most certainly know, that I would authorize the migration of some in-company tools (not customer projects - I'm not that bold) to Perl6.
And allow me the corollary, that during the development of such a converter, Perl6 - the language - would gain a development boost, because now it would have at least some code being benchmarked with.
Sorry if anyone is insulted by anything I wrote - just trying to express my sincere opinion.