Perl 5 Interactive Course
by Rick Smith (July 9, 2001)
B O O K I N F O R M A T I O N
I actually used this book several years ago to learn the Perl language. Unfortunately, there must have been some flaw in the printing workflow at the publisher that caused most of the illustrations to have NOTHING to do with the text involved. More mistakes were made in the answers for the questions in each chapter. Since I didn't immediately realize this disastrous problem, I thought I was a really slow learner since I got many questions wrong according to the book.
When I realized that the book was a good framework for learning, but there could be errors, I was required to check each of my answers using Perl code snippets so I could prove that each of my answers were correct. I went to the Waite Group E-zone site, which existed at the time, and found that the correct answers were available online which made testing easier. Sadly, this interactive site no longer exists, so it will be a most difficult book for anyone to use, because you will have to constantly verify each test question answer. This additional practice DOES aid in helping you fully understand the topic, but it makes the learning experience quite painful and lengthy. I survived, but found that you must devote additional time to explore almost every item you find in the text. This is the ultimate challenge in self study, since you will be trying to learn a new topic with a teacher that incorrectly grades your tests and makes occasional mistakes.
Since the Waite Group site no longer seems to exist in its full glory, unless you really want to go through the same arduous process I did, I suggest that you should find a revised edition of this book or a completely different book to learn Perl. It will be much easier. The Waite Group concept was great, but unfortunately their implementation was faulty.
This book does describe many of the features found only in Unix, but specific Windows issues are also described.
© 2001 Rick Smith All rights reserved.