[nSLUG] perl and web sites

Robin Murray nibor.yarrum at gmail.com
Thu Feb 27 11:29:48 AST 2014

I have a web site written in perl/template toolkit with a custom designed
MVC framework (no dancer/catalyst/mojo). This was a design choice at the
outset by a partner.

I've been looking into on-boarding a tech partner who is in love with
rails. His first reaction was to recommend converting the web site to
rails, partly due to his perception that perl is a legacy language and
partly due to his perception that he can find more rails programmers than
perl programmers.

I'm not in love with any particular language, couldn't care less in fact,
and from the little I've dabbled with ruby, I really like the simple syntax
and 'all oop' approach, and certainly the rails interface to the db is

But what this new guy is pushing is a large sideways jump, and I haven't
been able to decide yet if it's just because he wants to be on the latest
sexy language he's enamoured with, or if there is an actual business case
for this. One of the things that concerns me is the lack of performance of
ruby vs perl (or mod_perl in this case). I don't want to do the 100 mile
sideways jump to arrive at exactly what we have today, but with shitty
performance. I also don't believe there is anything that rails can bring to
the table that perl can't already do.

But I'm talking through my hat. I don't have experience with rails. Has
anyone here worked with both perl and rails web sites, and can add some
perspective? I'm just looking for points to consider so I can be a bit more

Also, I was wondering how many perl vs ruby programmers are on this list or
people generally know. Is rails really more popular than perl now? It is
hard to find good perl programmers in Halifax, but are ruby programmers
correspondingly falling out of the woodwork there?

Thanks for any thoughts.

Robin Murray
Hatchet Lake,
Nova Scotia
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