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   1  =head1 NAME
   3  perlcommunity - a brief overview of the Perl community
   5  =head1 DESCRIPTION
   7  This document aims to provide an overview of the vast perl community, which is
   8  far too large and diverse to provide a detailed listing. If any specific niche
   9  has been forgotten, it is not meant as an insult but an omission for the sake
  10  of brevity.
  12  The Perl community is as diverse as Perl, and there is a large amount of
  13  evidence that the Perl users apply TMTOWTDI to all endeavors, not just
  14  programming. From websites, to IRC, to mailing lists, there is more than one
  15  way to get involved in the community.
  17  =head2 Where to find the community
  19  There is a central directory for the Perl community: L<http://perl.org>
  20  maintained by the Perl Foundation (L<http://www.perlfoundation.org/>),
  21  which tracks and provides services for a variety of other community sites.
  23  =head2 Mailing lists and Newsgroups
  25  Perl runs on e-mail, there is no doubt about it. The Camel book was originally
  26  written mostly over e-mail and today Perl's development is co-ordinated through
  27  mailing lists. The largest repository of Perl mailing lists is located at
  28  L<http://lists.perl.org>.
  30  Most Perl-related projects set up mailing lists for both users and
  31  contributors. If you don't see a certain project listed at
  32  L<http://lists.perl.org>, check the particular website for that project.
  33  Most mailing lists are archived at L<http://nntp.perl.org/>.
  35  There are also plenty of Perl related newsgroups located under
  36  C<comp.lang.perl.*>.
  38  =head2 IRC
  40  The Perl community has a rather large IRC presence. For starters, it has its
  41  own IRC network, L<irc://irc.perl.org>. General (not help-oriented) chat can be
  42  found at L<irc://irc.perl.org/#perl>. Many other more specific chats are also
  43  hosted on the network. Information about irc.perl.org is located on the
  44  network's website: L<http://www.irc.perl.org>. For a more help oriented #perl,
  45  check out L<irc://irc.freenode.net/#perl>. Perl 6 development also has a
  46  presence in L<irc://irc.freenode.net/#perl6>. Most Perl-related channels will
  47  be kind enough to point you in the right direction if you ask nicely.
  49  Any large IRC network (Dalnet, EFnet) is also likely to have a #perl channel,
  50  with varying activity levels.
  52  =head2 Websites
  54  Perl websites come in a variety of forms, but they fit into two large
  55  categories: forums and news websites. There are many Perl related
  56  websites, so only a few of the community's largest are mentioned here.
  58  =head3 News sites
  60  =over 4
  62  =item L<http://perl.com/>
  64  Run by O'Reilly Media (The publisher of L<the Camel Book|perlbook> among other
  65  Perl-related literature), perl.com provides current Perl news, articles, and
  66  resources for Perl developers as well as a directory of other useful websites.
  68  =item L<http://use.perl.org/>
  70  use Perl; provides a slashdot-style Perl news website covering all things Perl,
  71  from minutes of the meetings of the Perl 6 Design team to conference
  72  announcements with (ir)relevant discussion.
  74  =back
  76  =head3 Forums
  78  =over 4
  80  =item L<http://www.perlmonks.org/>
  82  PerlMonks is one of the largest Perl forums, and describes itself as "A place
  83  for individuals to polish, improve, and showcase their Perl skills." and "A
  84  community which allows everyone to grow and learn from each other."
  86  =back
  88  =head2 User Groups
  90  Many cities around the world have local PerlMongers chapters. A PerlMongers
  91  chapter is a local user group which typically holds regular in-person meetings,
  92  both social and technical; helps organize local conferences, workshops, and
  93  hackathons; and provides a mailing list or other continual contact method for
  94  its members to keep in touch.
  96  To find your local PerlMongers (or PM as they're commonly abbreviated) group
  97  check the international PerlMongers directory at L<http://www.pm.org/>.
  99  =head2 Workshops
 101  Perl workshops are, as the name might suggest, workshops where Perl is taught
 102  in a variety of ways. At the workshops, subjects range from a beginner's
 103  introduction (such as the Pittsburgh Perl Workshop's "Zero To Perl") to much
 104  more advanced subjects.
 106  There are several great resources for locating workshops: the
 107  L<websites|"Websites"> mentioned above, the
 108  L<calendar|"Calendar of Perl Events"> mentioned below, and the YAPC Europe
 109  website, L<http://www.yapceurope.org/>, which is probably the best resource for
 110  European Perl events.
 112  =head2 Hackathons
 114  Hackathons are a very different kind of gathering where Perl hackers gather to
 115  do just that, hack nonstop for an extended (several day) period on a specific
 116  project or projects. Information about hackathons can be located in the same
 117  place as information about L<workshops|"Workshops"> as well as in
 118  L<irc://irc.perl.org/#perl>.
 120  If you have never been to a hackathon, here are a few basic things you need to
 121  know before attending: have a working laptop and know how to use it; check out
 122  the involved projects before hand; have the necessary version control client;
 123  and bring backup equipment (an extra LAN cable, additional power strips, etc.)
 124  because someone will forget.
 126  =head2 Conventions
 128  Perl has two major annual conventions: The Perl Conference (now part of OSCON),
 129  put on by O'Reilly, and Yet Another Perl Conference or YAPC (pronounced
 130  yap-see), which is localized into several regional YAPCs (North America,
 131  Europe, Asia) in a stunning grassroots display by the Perl community. For more
 132  information about either conference, check out their respective web pages:
 133  OSCON L<http://conferences.oreillynet.com/>; YAPC L<http://www.yapc.org>.
 135  A relatively new conference franchize with a large Perl portion is the
 136  Open Source Developers Conference or OSDC. First held in Australia it has
 137  recently also spread to Israel. More information can be found at:
 138  L<http://www.osdc.com.au/> for Australia, and L<http://www.osdc.org.il>
 139  for Israel.
 141  =head2 Calendar of Perl Events
 143  The Perl Foundation maintains a website and Google calendar for tracking
 144  Workshops, Hackathons, Perl Mongers meetings, and the larger conventions
 145  mentioned above. The web page is located at
 146  L<http://www.perl.org/events.html>; the Google calendar is named
 147  I<Perl Events>. Disclaimer: not every Perl Mongers group is on that calendar,
 148  so don't lose heart if you don't see yours posted. Read the section above
 149  on L<"User Groups"> to find yours.
 151  =head1 AUTHOR
 153  Edgar "Trizor" Bering <trizor@gmail.com>
 155  =cut

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