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RE: [PBML] "Perl For Dummies" Help Requested

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  • Mike Frank
    Thank you for your suggestions. I can t understand why this book was marketed by the For Dummies publisher if it doesn t do the job of teaching somebody how
    Message 1 of 4 , Oct 13, 2010
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      Thank you for your suggestions.

      I can't understand why this book was marketed by the "For Dummies" publisher
      if it doesn't do the job of teaching somebody how to use Perl.

      I like it because it has some good examples, and the descriptions are
      straight forward and understandable.

      Mike



      -----Original Message-----
      From: perl-beginner@yahoogroups.com [mailto:perl-beginner@yahoogroups.com]
      On Behalf Of Shlomi Fish
      Sent: Wednesday, October 13, 2010 2:51 AM
      To: perl-beginner@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [PBML] "Perl For Dummies" Help Requested

      On Wednesday 13 October 2010 04:23:11 Mike Frank wrote:
      > I have been teaching myself Perl via the "Perl For Dummies" book, and
      there
      > is one program that will not run as the book indicates it should.
      >

      The "For Dummies" books and their ilk have very bad reputations in the
      technical community. Furthermore, the 1st and 2nd editions of "Perl for
      Dummies" received a very negative review from Mark Jason Dominus:

      http://perl.plover.com/reviews/p54d.html

      May I suggest you head over to http://perl-begin.org/ and pursue one of the
      books or tutorials there instead of reading "Perl for Dummies"?

      > The program uses a flat file database, and I can choose between accessing
      > the file, or quitting. However, neither work.
      >
      > I have Googled for an answer to my problem, but I could not find the
      > solution.
      >
      > I ran the debugger, and I found that when the program reached "$DoSearch
      > =~ tr/A-Z/a-z/c;", the letter that is stored in $DoSearch changes from 'i'
      > or 'q' to 'z'.

      A better way to do it would be:

      [code]
      $DoSearch = lc($DoSearch);
      [/code]

      As for why it doens't work properly - reading from
      http://perldoc.perl.org/perlop.html :

      {{{
      Options:

      c Complement the SEARCHLIST.
      d Delete found but unreplaced characters.
      s Squash duplicate replaced characters.

      If the "/c" modifier is specified, the SEARCHLIST character set
      is
      complemented.
      }}}

      What the /c flag means that *anything* that is not included in the
      SEARCHLIST
      is matches. So you turn all the characters that are *not* inside A-Z into
      something else.

      I still think it's good that you know how to use the perl debugger, and that

      you're adhering to some good practices such as "use strict;" and "use
      warnings;". But otherwise, I suggest you follow my advice regarding
      http://perl-begin.org/ .

      Regards,

      Shlomi Fish

      --
      -----------------------------------------------------------------
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    • merlyn@stonehenge.com
      ... Mike I can t understand why this book was marketed by the For Dummies Mike publisher if it doesn t do the job of teaching somebody how to use Mike
      Message 2 of 4 , Oct 13, 2010
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        >>>>> "Mike" == Mike Frank <m-frank@...> writes:

        Mike> I can't understand why this book was marketed by the "For Dummies"
        Mike> publisher if it doesn't do the job of teaching somebody how to use
        Mike> Perl.

        I sat across the dinner table one night from the guy who wrote that
        book. From what I recall, he had just learned Perl himself the weekend
        before he started writing it (I think from "Learning Perl", in fact).
        No kidding. He was looking for something to write after he had just
        completed "Netscape for Dummies", and the editor offered him this book.

        --
        Randal L. Schwartz - Stonehenge Consulting Services, Inc. - +1 503 777 0095
        <merlyn@...> <URL:http://www.stonehenge.com/merlyn/>
        Smalltalk/Perl/Unix consulting, Technical writing, Comedy, etc. etc.
        See http://methodsandmessages.posterous.com/ for Smalltalk discussion
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