[Israel.pm] Is there a lack of (good) Perl programmers?

guy keren choo at actcom.co.il
Fri Mar 2 11:41:01 PST 2007

Pinkhas Nisanov wrote:
> On 3/1/07, Yona Shlomo <yona at cs.technion.ac.il> wrote:
>> On Thu, 1 Mar 2007, Pinkhas Nisanov wrote:
>>> but I feel that here, in Israel, it's very hard for perl programmer to get
>>> even average salary for good programmer.
>> Why do you feel this way?
> It's enough for java ( c++, c#, ... ) programmer to have experience
> only in one language to get good salary. I feel it's not the case for perl
> ( python, ruby, ... ) programmers. In some cases it's even better
> you will not mention that you know perl, because some managers
> do not like strange people that know strange languages.
> You can say, there are no many big projects written in perl, so there is
> no need for full time perl programmer. The question is, why most of
> new projects are not written in perl ( python, ruby, ..., if you will suggest
> "haskel" you will lose your job )? What I want to say, it's not because
> there are no perl programmers. I never saw that some company wanted
> so much to write new project in perl, that they were ready to pay to
> perl programmer above average salary ( I saw such companies abroad ).
> I feel "lack of perl programmers" is just a pretext.

a. most managers are not well-versed about scripting languages such as perl.

b. the name 'scripting languages' put those languages in a nische. this 
marketing automatically excludes their use for writing "real programs".

c. the web made this different, since it offered a different programming 
model - you program "a page at a time", and most of the time the user 
does not use the server - back to the way mainframes worked. as such, it 
made scripting languages popular, at first.

d. since then, two languages "took over" the web - asp+X and php. even 
java took a hold with things like servlets, application servers from 
IBM/BEA/whatever, etc.

i think it has got a lot to do with marketing.

there is also the fact that in universities, scripting languages are not 
well demonstrated - they all stick to C++ and java. when students go 
"out there" - all they know is that they want to work in "java". or in 
"C++". even telling them you work in C reduces their enthusiasm. i am 
quite sure i would have reacted the same way when i was fresh.

if you want to bring about some change - you'll have to start teaching 
scripting languages for heavy-duty things in the university - i.e. for a 
   programming project course, and then use it in 2-3 other courses. 
that might change people's preferences. that might make them think "this 
language is 'cool' - i want to work with it when i get my first job".

i think this might be different then in larger companies, because people 
in israel like to follow the hurd, and there are only a few universities 
here - so there's less diversity then abroad.


> thanks
> Pinkhas Nisanov
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