Nov 2, 2013

Would You Miss Autoderef in 5.20? solutions in search of a problem

This is a response to Chromatics blog post Would You Miss Autoderef in 5.20?, because I can't ever get comments to work on his MT for something like a year (500, or some blogger openid incompat).

In all honesty I don't find either particularly interesting. I've too often been targeting 5.8 or 5.10 for syntax... @{ $foo } is really the most I've ever needed, @$foo is nicer, but beyond that don't need it. I can't figure out the value of either autoderef or postfix deref, neither of these seem to be solving actual pain points, I think perhaps they're a solution in search of a problem. Maybe I just need someone to point out a good use case that this stuff is solving.

Where are the things I actually need? Here's hoping that 5.20 will get method signatures, or exception handling or maybe figure out how to get given/when out of experimental, something useful.

I really do appreciate all the hard work the people who are improving core perl are doing, and it's all needed. Things like __SUB__ and my sub {} are absolutely awesome, as well as all the work on unicode, and other general improvements. Maybe lexical subs will be moved to stable? but I doubt it. Basically I want something that I can point to my friends outside of the echo chamber, something they could look at and say, yeah that's cool, Perl is moving forward.