This Week on perl5-porters (2-8 August 2004)

This Week on perl5-porters (2-8 August 2004)

Another week, another summary, while we're getting unnoticeably older. (Yes, I just remarked that I started those summaries two years ago.)

File tests on AIX

David Favor and Rafael investigated the implementation of filetests operators on AIX (bug #30885), notably regarding access control lists and how AIX system calls deal with them.

Uninitialized versus undefined

Ovid asked whether there was a way, internally, to tell the difference between a variable that holds the undef value, and a variable that hasn't been initialized at all. Dave Mitchell says that the short answer is no, but elaborates a bit.

Version objects

John Peacock sent the Final Version Object Core Patch. (Minus a small leak found by Steve Hay.)

Ken Williams initiated a debate on the meaning of the UNIVERSAL::VERSION() method, when the version module has been loaded. It overloads UNIVERSAL::VERSION() to return a version object. This annoys Module::Build. John Peacock argues that $VERSION should not be compared as a string. Fergal Daly disagrees, saying that $VERSION should not be compared as a floating point number.


Marcus Holland-Moritz released two beta versions of Devel::PPPort 3. Incidentally, we learn that he has 87 perls installed on his laptop for his testing needs. However, more tests are welcome.

Paul Marquess released DB_File 1.810, to solve Cygwin problems.

In Brief

Rafael removed the "Newline in left-justified string for sprintf" warning.

Fergal Daly added to the diagnostics module the ability to display stack traces on errors and warnings.

Fergal, actually, is apparently writing a stack trace module. While doing so, he found and reported a bug concerning what happens when you tie %SIG : it doesn't work until you insert a value in it. (Bug #30926.)

Andy Lyttle reported that using array indices near 2**32 wraps around and results in accesses to the first elements of the array. (Bug #30979.) As he says, that's the sort of weird behavior we expect from C, not from perl.

About this summary

This summary was written by Rafael Garcia-Suarez. Weekly summaries are published on and posted on a mailing list, which subscription address is Comments and corrections welcome.