Perl Advent Calendar, 2003

by Andy Lester

Related link: http://www.perladvent.org/2003/



CPAN, the Comprehensive Perl Archive Network, is a treasure trove of submitted code from across the Perl community, and is one of the reasons for Perl's great popularity. There are modules for everything from
traversing web pages like a web browser, to
handling bibliographic data for libraries, to
checking your Perl documentation for syntactic correctness, and that's just the stuff I maintain myself. There are hundreds of other active contributors, and over 2500 modules in the CPAN module list.


With so many modules, it can be daunting for a Perl beginner to know what's worth noting. (Heck, it's daunting for us experts, too.) Plus, since so many modules are built on other modules (WWW::Mechanize is built on LWP::UserAgent and HTML::Form, and Test::Pod is built on Pod::Simple and Test::Builder), it's important for module authors to know which modules are best-of-breed.


One source for direction is Mark Fowler's Perl Advent Calendar. Each day in the month of December, Mark reveals a new module in his calendar, including an overview and mini-tutorial in its use. Today's module is CGI::Untaint which encapsulates the validation of CGI parameters in handy functions. If you get antsy waiting for the next 24 days, you can see the calendars for the
previous
three
years.

Have you heard of similar projects for other languages?