I have a five-foot stack of Perl books and several years' experience using Perl on my Web site, but I still don't feel like I've found the hangout of the people who use pure Perl for operating their Web sites ... I'd like to help develop easy-to-use Perl solutions for webmasters in the content management area. If we could make Perl easier to use FOR THE WEB I think we could attract more interest and involvement from so many of the new developers who are spending so much of their time using PHP instead of Perl to develop new content management and other data-aware applications FOR THE WEB.
Where are the WEB APPLICATION Perl developers hanging out? Just the mod_perl site and newsgroup? Sure, there are scads of kiddie CGI sites and scripts but the only solutions I've found for creating speedy (persistent) CGI applications using Perl on a Linux server seem to be mod_perl and FastCGI ... both of which seem so darned hard to use compared to the PHP module that can be built into Apache.
Is that maybe the one thing that Nat didn't say -- that Perl enthusiasm isn't bubbling up from the ranks because the ranks have been so thinned by PHP? That Perl is wonderful and superior in almost every way except that it's so damned hard for open-source developers to use to create speedy, persistent database-enabled web sites ... and that we're unwilling to admit that the Web is the "long pole in the tent" for most of the new developers (not network administration, data munging, etc.)? It's kind of sad that "Perl for the Web" (New Riders) seems to be out of print, and that "MySQL and Perl for the Web" (New Riders) plus one other book by Brent Michaelski seem to be the only books for webmasters that are focused on using Perl FOR THE WEB.
I sure don't mean to put down all the effort that's gone into mod_perl.