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Perl at Wal-Mart

by jacques (Priest)
on Jan 12, 2003 at 18:16 UTC ( #226308=perlnews: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

As many of you know, Wal-Mart has been selling PCs with the Lindows OS, which is basically a Debian clone. The OS comes with a preinstalled version of Perl. Apparently Java, Python, and, of course, PHP are not included. (Note that a US judge recently ruled that Microsoft must include Java with WinXP.) Before you say "So what?", consider the fact that Wal-Mart is the world's largest retailer with more than 3,400 stores in the U.S. and in countries like China, Brazil, Germany, and even California. ;) And they are growing . . .

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Re: Perl at Wal-Mart
by theorbtwo (Prior) on Jan 12, 2003 at 22:10 UTC

    Parts of the package management system of debian are written (mostly poorly) in perl, thus making it required.


    Warning: Unless otherwise stated, code is untested. Do not use without understanding. Code is posted in the hopes it is useful, but without warranty. All copyrights are relinquished into the public domain unless otherwise stated. I am not an angel. I am capable of error, and err on a fairly regular basis. If I made a mistake, please let me know (such as by replying to this node).

Re: Perl at Wal-Mart
by Abigail-II (Bishop) on Jan 13, 2003 at 14:51 UTC
    Yes, and? Each one will have gcc, awk and ed installed as well. Would you expect usage of 'ed' going through the roof?

    Abigail

      Yes, and?

      Hmmm . . .I think Perl + Wal-Mart is somewhat interesting, probably for the same reasons that people in the Linux community were abuzz when Lindows hit their shelves. But I agree with person who said that this story is not nearly as significant as Perl's inclusion with Windows would be.

      Would you expect usage of 'ed' going through the roof?

      Thankfully, Perl is more useful.

        I for one think that between Windows and Linux, Lindows combines the worst of both worlds. I lost interest in the product as such when I read that it logs the user in as root by default and doesn't even tell them. I don't know if the current releases still follow that practice, but I don't care to find out anymore - I was appalled at the company's tactics to turn their Linux distro into a proprietary closed product. As far as I'm concerned, nothing good can come from Lindows.

        Makeshifts last the longest.

Re: Perl at Wal-Mart
by thewalledcity (Friar) on Jan 12, 2003 at 18:21 UTC

    So the implication is that this will further enhance the growth of perl? I am not sure I follow you.

      Maybe Perl will further enchance the growth of Lindows and Wal-Mart . . . :)
Re: Perl at Wal-Mart
by moxliukas (Curate) on Jan 13, 2003 at 14:23 UTC

    I am actually sceptical about this kind of prospect for promoting Perl. Perl is seen as a complicated language. Which is true. I would think that anyone smart enough to code Perl would be smart enough to be able to install another programming language on their computer. I would rather think that Wal-Mart customers are not the highly skilled programmers. Think about it this way: Microsoft Word has had Visual Basic support for ages -- how many Word users know Visual Basic?

    The only thing that this would be good for is encouraging software writers to wrtie in Perl, because the platform would be already installed on the machine. But how many unixes ship without Perl these days anyway?

    Now if we could slip Perl into the standard Windows distribution...

      Perl is seen as a complicated language. Which is true.

      I disagree. Perl people like to think Perl is complicated but in reality, it's an extremely easy to learn language. The documentation is second to none, there are many great sources of help, and the language itself is very logical and easy to follow, even if it does look like line noise ;-P

      As for being included with a OS at Walmart, it means nothing and won't increase the user base substantially. I applaud you for bring it up though, discussion of Perl advocacy is a good thing :)

      I would rather think that Wal-Mart customers are not the highly skille +d programmers.
      EVERYONE shops at walmart.

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