Prompted by RIBASUSHI's blog post, several discussions, github issue threads, and a long IRC chat with MITHALDU (pro tip: don't get him started! :-), I've been thinking about Perl community. I realised that one of the things I was reacting to was the suggestion that for Perl, "IRC == community". So, what is "the perl community"?

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CPAN is awesome - it's "the killer feature for Perl". And you know who we've got to thank for that? Us! CPAN is a rambling random hodge-podge of code; dozens of duplicates; variable quality of code, documentation, test coverage and run-time performance. And d'you know who's to blame? Us!

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The term 'Perl community' is bandied about, but it's not always clear what it means, or the scope of it. I'm not going to try and nail it down, just talk about one aspect. When working on a new module, three different people helped me within 24 hours or so, and that felt good.

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At last year's London Perl Workshop I went to an entertaining and interesting talk about fractions by Theo Van Hoesel. After releasing the first version of Lingua::EN::Fractions I got in touch with Theo to talk about fractions.

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With relatively little fanfare Chris Williams, aka BINGOS, today announced that he's passed 20 million reports submitted to CPAN Testers. I think we should all pause to thank Chris for his contribution to one of the key resources for CPAN authors.

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It pains me to admit this, but RIBASUSHI was right. As we rode on the train together into Lyon, he told me that for him the hackathons are mainly about having discussions, with the hacking coming later. "Pah!", I said, "I'm here to hack"...

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The 15 minute rule

communitycultureguidelines Thu 23 January 2014

When working on something, when you hit a problem don't ask for help right away. Work at it until you feel stuck. And when you're stuck, work at it for 15 more minutes, even if you feel like you're banging your head against the wall. And then ask for help.

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The CPAN buddy system

CPANBuddyculturecommunity Fri 16 August 2013

This is an idea for encouraging new contributors to CPAN. When someone uploads their first ever module to CPAN, a volunteer buddy would be assigned. This would be a more experienced CPAN author who would email them "hi, saw your just uploaded your first module — awesome! Let me know if you have any questions, in the meantime here are some good resources about modules, CPAN and the perl community". Of course that could be done automatically, but the human connection would make a lot of difference, I believe.

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