Wider List::Util


I discovered that List::Util became wider and I think it’s a good thing.

I remember that, some time ago (vague), List::Util in Perl was a useful although a bit tight collection of functions.

I also remember that somebody wanted more utilities to end up there, others were against this and eventually frustration led to List::MoreUtils, sadly not in CORE.

I can only imagine how much self-control (or smoothing through time) went into the following terse description that we find today:

List::MoreUtils provides some trivial but commonly needed functionality on lists which is not going to go into List::Util.

Anyway, fast-forward to today, I notice that both modules kind of exploded! This is good IMHO.

I’m particularly happy about a few additions in the CORE module, of course, because it’s CORE and we can count on it everywhere we find Perl. Well, unless your Linux distribution decides to redefine what CORE means… This is sadly another story.

I like the appearance of sample, to get some distinct items out of a list:

use List::Util 'sample';
my $password = join '-', sample 4, @dictionary;

(You know about passwords, right?)

I’m a bit doubtful about head and tail though, to be honest, for a couple of reasons:

  • it seems to me that it’s extremely easy to just use splice for this;
  • I’m not sure to follow the logic by which both functions accept a negative value to go “from the other end”.

I guess that the answer is probably enhance readability for the first doubt (and ease of use, think shift and pop for example), as well as consistency for the second. Still…

Well, nitpicking apart I’m happy that there are more cards up a Perler’s sleeve! Thanks Perl folks and, in this case, even more thanks to Paul Evans I guess!

Stay safe folks, please!

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