Wall is the author of the rn Usenet client and the nearly universally used patch. He has won the International Obfuscated C Code Contest twice and was the recipient of the first Free Software Foundation award for the Advancement of Free Software in 1998.
Beyond his technical skills, Wall is known for his wit and often ironic sense of humor, which he displays in the comments to his source code or on Usenet. For example: "We all agree on the necessity of compromise. We just can't agree on when it's necessary to compromise."
Larry Wall is a trained linguist, and has used this training in the design of Perl. He is the co-author of Programming Perl (often referred to as the Camel Book), which is the definitive resource for Perl programmers. He has edited the Perl Cookbook. His books were published by O'Reilly.
Wall's Christian faith has informed some of the terminology of Perl, such as the name itself, a biblical reference to the "Pearl of great price" (Matthew 13:46). Similar references are the function names bless and confess and the organization of his talks into categories such as apocalypse and exegesis. Wall has also alluded to his faith when he has spoken at conferences, including a rather straightforward statement of his beliefs at the August, 1997 Perl Conference and a discussion of Pilgrim's Progress at the YAPC (Yet Another Perl Conference) in June, 2000.
While in grad school, Larry and his wife were studying linguistics with the intention of afterwards finding an unwritten language, perhaps in Africa, and create a writing system for it. With this new writing system they wanted to translate various texts into the language, among them the Bible. Due to health reasons these plans were cancelled, and they remained in the US, where Larry instead joined the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, when he finished grad school.
Larry Wall originally created Perl while a programmer at Unisys. He now works full time guiding the future development of the language as a researcher and developer at O'Reilly Media, Inc.. Larry is known for his idiosyncratic and thought-provoking approach to programming, as well as for his groundbreaking contributions to the culture of free software programming. He is the principal author of the bestselling Programming Perl, known colloquially as "the Camel book."
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Simon Cozens is an Open Source programmer and author. He has released over a hundred Perl modules including Email::Simple, Mail::Audit, Maypole, Plucene, and B::Generate. He's the co-author of Beginning Perl (Wrox) and Extending and Embedding Perl (Manning) and was the managing editor of Perl.com from 2001 to 2004. A graduate in Japanese from Oxford University, he now lives in Wales and enjoys Japanese and Greek food, bizarre music and fine typography.
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Randal L. Schwartz is a two-decade veteran of the software industry. He is skilled in software design, system administration, security, technical writing, and training. Randal has coauthored the "must-have" standards: Programming Perl, Learning Perl, Learning Perl for Win32 Systems, and Effective Perl Learning, and is a regular columnist for WebTechniques, PerformanceComputing, SysAdmin, and Linux magazines.
He is also a frequent contributor to the Perl newsgroups, and has moderated comp.lang.perl.announce since its inception. His offbeat humor and technical mastery have reached legendary proportions worldwide (but he probably started some of those legends himself). Randal's desire to give back to the Perl community inspired him to help create and provide initial funding for The Perl Institute. He is also a founding board member of the Perl Mongers (perl.org), the worldwide Perl grassroots advocacy organization. Since 1985, Randal has owned and operated Stonehenge Consulting Services, Inc. Randal can be reached for comment at email@example.com or (503) 777-0095, and welcomes questions on Perl and other related topics.
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Dr. Damian Conway is a Senior Lecturer in Computer Science and Software Engineering at Monash University (Melbourne, Australia), where he teaches object-oriented software engineering. He is an effective teacher, an accomplished writer, and the author of several popular Perl modules. He is also a semi-regular contributor to the Perl Journal. In 1998 he was the winner of the Larry Wall Award for Practical Utility for two modules (Getopt::Declare and Lingua::EN::Inflect) and in 1999 he won his second "Larry" for his Coy.pm haiku-generation module.
Tim Bunce has been a perl5 porter since 1994, contributing to the development of the Perl language and many of its core modules. He is the author and maintainer of the DBI, DBD::Oracle,and Oracle::OCI modules, and author and co-maintainer of The Perl Module List. Tim is the founder and CTO of Data-Plan Services, a perl, database, and performance consultancy with an international client base. Prior to that we was Technical Director (CTO) of IG in the UK where he was awarded by British Telecom for his role in the rapid development of their Call Management Information service, a system implemented in Perl. He is co-author, along with Alligator Descartes, of Programming the Perl DBI, the definitive book on DBI, published by O'Reilly Media, Inc. in February 2000.
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Stas Bekman is the author of The mod_perl Guide, the Open Source document that is the basis for this book. Stas is a member of the Apache Software Foundation and is a multiple speaker at the O'Reilly Open Source Conference. Stas is also a regular author for Perl.com.
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Shawn Wallace has been applying computers to graphics problems for the past fifteen years. A programmer and artist, Shawn is managing director of the AS220 (www.as220.org) artist community in Providence, RI, a cofounder of the SMT Computing Society, and a member of the Rhode Island chapter of the Perl Mongers. He is also involved in the Bolero open source music notation system (www.as220.org/shawn/bolero) and the Institute for Folk Computing, a program to inform and inspire the use of open software by the general public in Providence. Shawn studied computer engineering at the University of Rhode Island and participated in the construction of an early (mid-80s) hypermedia delivery system at HyperView Systems in Middletown, RI.
He is a researcher at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in Cold Spring Harbor, NY. My research goal is to make the human genome both accessible and navigable by scientists using the World Wide Web.
He write software for biological databases, for data analysis and visualization and for sharing results. I write about the Web for Web Techniques Magazine and The Perl Journal. I've also published a few books on Web subjects.
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James Tisdall has worked as a musician, a programmer at Bell Labs (where he programmed for speech research and discovered a formal language for musical rhythm), and as a bioinformaticist at Mercator Genetics in Menlo Park, California, and at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia. He has a B.A. in mathematics from the City College of New York and an M.S. in computer science from Columbia University; he is working towards a Ph.D. in computer science at the University of Pennsylvania. In his spare time, Jim teaches computer music at the Settlement Music School in Philadelphia. He is also the author of O'Reilly's Beginning Perl for Bioinformatics.
David N. Blank-Edelman is the Director of Technology at the Northeastern University College of Computer Science. He has spent the last 14 years of his life as a system/network administrator in large multi-platform environments, including Brandeis University, Cambridge Technology Group, and the MIT Media Laboratory. He has served as Senior Technical Editor for The Perl Journal and has written many magazine articles on world music. In his spare time, he studies mbira, a traditional Shona instrument from Zimbabwe.
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