Recently in Grants Category

Dave Mitchell writes:

I spent June mainly processing my p5p mailbox, and looking at various bugs, half of which appeared (initially at least) to be 5.20 regressions.


6:40 [perl #121977] COWification seems expensive in PADMY variables
0:28 [perl #121984] newSVpvf slow in perl 5.20.0
0:28 [perl #122003] uses excessive CPU on OpenBSD
0:07 [perl #122024] PL_sv_no weirdness
1:16 [perl #122077] Bleadperl v5.21.0-274-ga7ab896 breaks SHURIKO/String-Simrank-0.079.tar.gz
1:39 [perl #122099] Perl regression bug since 5.13.11 (masked by CoW since 5.19.1
25:57 process p5p mailbox

36:35 Total (HH::MM)

4.3 weeks
36.6 total hours
8.5 average hours per week

As of 2014/06/30: since the beginning of the grant:

37.1 weeks
528.0 total hours
14.2 average hours per week

There are 272 hours left on the grant

The Grants Committee has received two grant proposals for the July round. Before the Committee members vote, we would like to solicit feedback from the Perl community on the proposal.

Review the proposal below and please comment there. The Committee members will start the voting process on July 26th and the conclusion will be announced by July 31st.

We have received the following grant application "Start ACT - Voyager". Please leave feedback in the comments field by July 25th, 2014.

Start ACT - Voyager

  • Name:

    Theo van Hoesel

  • Amount Requested:

    $ 1.000 DBIx::Class

    $ 2.000 Dancer(2) implementation

    $ 1.000 REST api

    $ 2.000 Theme Based templates

    $ 6.000 TOTAL


The Perl Community is a social community that gathers at several places around the world during Conferences and WorkShops and Hackathons. Since more than a decade ACT has been used to provide organisers of these events a central system for registration, payments, talk-submits and scheduling.

However, development has been stalled for a long time and many good initiatives has been surfaced and not yet materialised over the last years.

Start ACT, Voyager, will be a large project that will lay down the fundaments that allow for growth and expansion, based on top of the deep settled original ACT implementation.

Many of the ideas of 'BooK' about ACT2 and the work done by 'Getty' for YACT are inspirational for the roadmap to a new platform for the essential Conference Toolkit.

Benefits to the Perl Community

* we suck at marketing * is a phrase not to be proud of and as a result of that mind set, the main hub for Perl events is not catching up with courante user experience and not providing the means for front-end developers to change anything about it. Gradually, this will be a 'voyage' to upgrade the current ACT to modern standards so new features can be build upon it.

One thing it will provide is a 'Next Generation' REST api. This will allow others to write their own web-applications that will lift the load from the current ACT server tremendously when done by experienced front-enders. Clients are encouraged to cache their retrieved data locally and most of the mobile apps do rely on the presence of such api's.

Eventually in 'the Final Frontier' there will be a complete working theme-based template that allows for responsive web design, including user-profiles and, not less important, a web-base backend to manage 'instances' of conferences. With a few clicks organisers will be able to have a good looking website based on some default themes and layouts. For those that do not want these predefined templates, one can always setup their own server and make calls to the REST-api.


Too many feature-requests and ideas do exist but Start Act - Voyager is merely a road map and along that road the following are essential deliverables:

DBIx::Class Schema of the current ACT Database


A working version of ACT, build with the previously written Schema, which is a replacement of the ACT Core templates and modules.

REST api (the Next Generation)

Mostly responding to GET methods and a few POST and PUTsd

Theme-based Templates (the Final Frontier)

Easy to setup, possibly through a backend to ACT

Project Details

Some of the great ideas will be borrowed from the previous Grant for YACT. However it will not have all the nice bells and whistles that make this project insane big. As said before, it is a platform for growth end extensability and others can build more nice features into it. An ACT Hackathon will be a wonderful opportunity to extend with new features.

One email from 'BooK' contains a whole list of inspiring ideas on what the supposed ACT2 (api based) should be providing and next is a quote from his email:

"Working on an API makes it easier to focus on the data (which is the value of Act) and to leave working on other things for later (the web framework, the conference management tools, etc). I think Act2 should come up with a web application (with better support for conference-specific templates), but should not be tied to it (so that others can do something else with it, like a smartphone app)."

It would be too much to write down all the details, but that quote shows quite clearly which direction StartAct - Voyager should be going.


Since this is quite a huge project, it is hard to say which tiny steps would be needed to get to the end. The milestones are mostly the deliverables as mentioned before.

Project Schedule

Starting on this project will be possible shortly after YAPC::EU. A nice opportunity to have some more discussions with the people that are currently on the mailinglist and IRC. Since the complexity of the project and the number of resources that needs to be accessible through the REST api as well as all the templates that need to be doen (twice), It might easily last up to a year, working one or two days per week and spending some evenings here and there.

Completeness Criteria

The project on itself will be completed when it is possible for an organiser to easily create an instance and choose and modify a predefined theme.

However, each of the for mentioned mile-stones and deliverables need to be completed before actually moving on to the next stage


I'm the oldest 'send-a-newbie', entered into the Perl community back in April 2013. Before that my coding was gibberish but since then I met many many people in the community that showed me how Perl can be really a powerful tool.

Things done in Perl are as simple as an automated 'talks-titler' that generates HD-TV quality title pages from the talks-list in ACT (see the NLPW::2014 video's) to more interesting things like building a OOP wrapper around the ugliest Magento XML-RPC interface.

Currently I'm writing a REST api generator that does for DANCER what does for DBIx::Class: writing all the routes and HTTP-methods into separate modules for each resource found in the database.

Before writing Perl, I have done quite some Objective-C for iOS applications. And long before that, I used to be self-employed web designer.

I'm also one of the organisers of the NLPW::2014 and 2015 and have great personal interest in having a better user experience with ACT based websites, both enduser as maintainer.

It has been my desire to change the user experience of ACT since I first used the web-site... checking my schedule personal schedule on the first day of YAPC::EU::2013 in Kiev... on an iPhone (WARNING: DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME)

We have received the following grant application "Book: Practical Approach to Web Programming with Perl 5". Please leave feedback in the comments field by July 25th, 2014.

Book: Practical Approach to Web Programming with Perl 5

  • Name:

    Ahmad Bilal

  • Amount Requested:

    USD 1000


This book would teach web programming from ground up through a practical and minimalist approach.

Benefits to the Perl Community

2 years back, when I was first introduced to Perl, I had a horrible time learning it as my first programming language. Most of the resources available were very theoretical, and I could not find practical and simple code. I went through many O'Reilly Media books, to no avail. I realised that most of the books were either outdated, or aimed at programmers already proficient in some other programming language or required strong computer science background.

For example, even searching for "use HTML and Perl together" had produced a lot of vague results back then, even though its so... easy to answer it now, that I progressed further on the path of Perl.

Even modern books like Perl Maven, and Modern Perl: Chromatic, dive into theory first, before coming to practical sample codes. Even though I acknowledge the breath of fresh air they brought to the Perl community.

The extent of things was this, that when I recruited some interns in 2014 spring-summer, for my start-up from top tech-colleges in India, there was only handful of kids who knew Perl. Most of them preferred PHP, Ruby or Python. And the handful few, either knew the Perl as it was in 1990s (due to the syllabus in-force in these colleges) or were specialised in the field of Bio-informatics. I had to develop my own techniques and methods to teach Perl5 to my interns, and thankfully they are now self-proficient. Those techniques and methods gave me a solid base, for the purpose of writing this book.

I aim to write this book, to teach people Perl, by using practical, simple and secure code, ready for first time programmers as well as experienced ones. But since I'm busy with my start-up, I fear that without a grant, I might lose my motivation midway. Thus a grant would help me greatly to cover some basic day-to-day expenses if I'm to put time and effort in writing and researching for this book. Personally, I'm very passionate about this book project.

I would also like to promote, Perl in India through authoring and resultant marketing of this book.


20-40 Scripts, starting from Hello World, Print Submitted Info, Login Script, all the way up to designing Full Fledge Games, and Writing Complex Modules.

Though I have not finalised all the scripts yet, they may go in this pattern:

1. Hello World Script

2. Print Submitted Data (from a HTML Form)

3. Simple Login Script (no encryption, no database)

4. Session Management

5. Advanced Login Script (encryption and database)

6. Account Creation & Password Retrieval System

7. Handling different modern DB like SQLITE, PostgreSQL, MySQL, etc.

8. A Full-Fledge Blog Management

9. A web-based Hangman/Tic-tac-toe game

10. A web-based game of Intermediate Complexity

and so on..

Project Details

I already have a personal blog, where I have written some simple scripts:

You can see on that blog, my personal style, where I explain each and every line (spoon-feeding), besides adding a few simple tips every now and then. In my book, I would aim to improve upon this style to a big extent, reducing inefficiency (using reference codes, additional resources-link, etc) and adding diversity (Board/2D RPG Game programming in Perl) plus some aesthetics like Perl-Meme, Interesting-Facts (about Perl and its community), etc. I have some hidden aces as well, that I would rather reveal in the final version of the book.

Also, sometime back I came across this book called (Perl One-Liners - 130 Programs That Get Things Done). Though I was a bit disappointed with the content of the book, but overall, I liked their approach. It was exactly what I was thinking as well. In my early days, as a perl programmer, I used to constantly come across, a lot of code that was unnecessarily complex, and had no human-value and gave Perl its ugly-complex identity to the un-initiated. I used to think, for god sakes! When are tjey going to write a book that would get REAL things done!!?


I think the deliverables, and their completion would be rather solid inch-stones. The progress can be simply and clearly noticed by completion of each script.

Project Schedule

I can commit a lot of time, since our start-up is also using Perl as our back-end-language. I would begin in August 2014, and ideally complete it before Mid-Dec 2014, but it can change by up to 1-2 months take or leave, as my main concern is simplicity and effectiveness. I would rather take a bit more time, to write a good book, instead of rushing to meet deadlines.

Completeness Criteria

The book would be available in ebook, html, pod, under a public license (would decide on exactly which license, later.. perhaps copy-left).


My name is Ahmad Bilal, I'm an independent developer as well as an entrepreneur based in New Delhi, India. I have always been a unorthodox learner, and a generalist to begin with. I come from a academic family, where my mother, 3 aunts, and many other family members are university professors/school teachers, due to which, from the get-go, I have learned the art of the teaching and writing books from them. My father is in construction business, where he has to manage a lot of unskilled labour, and on a very constant & personal basis engage and train them. So yes.., training is in my blood. Also I'm a firm believer in quality-over-quantity concept, and always excelled in various fields with little or no prior experience as a fast learner due to my practical approach.

In CS, I'm a very good UI Designer with more than 4-5 years of experience (Photoshop, HTML, CSS, etc) mainly wih ,.. besides being familiar with C++ and Python as well.

I look forward to get support for this endeavour from the Perl community :)

Dave Mitchell writes:

I mainly spent May helping to get blead ready for release; in particular by trying to reduce smoke failures and by looking at 5.20 blocker tickets.


0:24 #95493 for Devel-Size: broken by bleadperl
1:00 #95940 for Cache-Mmap: Test suite segfaults with Perl 5.20.0-RC1
2:04 [perl #116925] document/publicize THINKFIRST
1:15 [perl #119433] Bleadperl v5.19.3-16-gce0d59f breaks the CPAN
2:10 [perl #120792] Bleadperl v5.19.6-171-g437e3a7 breaks ROBIN/Want-0.21.tar.gz
4:08 [perl #121796] COW related performance regression in 5.19
1:41 [perl #121826] Bleadperl breaks ELIZABETH/String-Lookup-0.12.tar.gz
4:48 [perl #121831] ASAN segfaults in lib/warnings.t
2:41 [perl #121854] use re 'taint' regression
0:38 [perl #121899] Bleadperl v5.19.2-231-g7db6405 breaks MLEHMANN/Devel-FindRef-1.43.tar.gz
2:12 [perl #121938] Bleadperl breaks KAPPA/signatures-0.07.tar.gz
3:56 blead breaks 'ifdef'
3:18 fix smoke issues
19:34 process p5p mailbox
0:21 review perldelta

50:10 Total (HH::MM)

4.4 weeks
50.2 total hours
11.3 average hours per week

As of 2014/05/31: since the beginning of the grant:

32.9 weeks
491.5 total hours
15.0 average hours per week

There are 309 hours left on the grant

Tony Cook writes:

Approximately 80 tickets were reviewed or otherwise worked on, 1 change was applied to blead (many were applied to a smoke-me branch to test 5.21.1 blockers.)

3.11#116925 review new discussion
#116925 review discussion and update patch
0.47#119425 review and comment
3.72#119593 code review and debugging
#119593 more debugging, review, produce patch and comment
#119593 add explanation to patch
8.53#121332 applying 5.21.1 blockers patches
#121332 more 5.21.1 blockers
#121332 apply more 5.21.1 blocker patches
#121332 more blockers
#121332 more blockers
0.92#121337 debug, research history and comment

As communicated at the May round closure (link), the Grants Committee is accepting grant proposals all the time. We evaluate them every two months and another evaluation period has come.

If you have an idea for doing some Perl work that will benefit the Perl community, consider sending a grant application. The application deadline for this round is 23:59 July 15th UTC. We will publish the received applications, get community feedback and conclude the acceptance by July 31st.

The format will be the same as the May round except that you have a bit more than two weeks from now.

To apply, please read how to submit a grant. Rules of Operation will also help you understand how the grant process works.

We will confirm the receipt of application within 24 hours.

If you have further questions, please comment here. If your comment does not show up here within 24 hours, the chances are that the spam filter did something bad. Get in touch with me at tpf-grants-secretary at

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Recent Comments

  • Peter Rabbitson: I am currently traveling, so am not in a position read more
  • Theo: I am very grateful for the commitment from the Dancer2 read more
  • Sawyer X: I had not seen the publication of this until this read more
  • Theo: Okay, lets give it a try to make some 'yard read more
  • Theo: Dan, it might not have been totally clear in the read more
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  • lestrrat: I agree with Tim here in that the goal of read more
  • perlpilot: Thanks for the "more info" Theo. Though I have to read more
  • Ahmad Bilal: Anon 1) Ahh.. the old "Reinventing the Wheel" dialogue. I read more
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