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Freshmeat Perl figures rebuttal.

January 7, 2009

I’ve been in a “discussion” with David N. Welton blog post about Freshmeat figures.

Unfortunately the blogs comments have now been turned off ;-(

The wider Perl community also stumbled across this “discussion”. Perhaps the positive outcome of this will be more seamless updating mechanism from CPAN to services like Freshmeat?

This is what would have been my last reply on that blog post….


I’m not sure why you think this should “upset me”? My “beef” as always been with u miss using/representing the Freshmeat data. The same would apply to other programming languages as well its just that the Perl one stands out like a sore thumb πŸ˜‰

U still haven’t accepted that its incorrect to use Freshmeat data out of context. Because its a Nonprobability sample then statements like “why would it be different to Python, Lua or *” just don’t hold water I’m afraid.

I’ll give u a question which may help u understand what is happening…. “when did Perl ‘start to coast’ on Freshmeat?”.

Your analysis has been limited to just 2007 & 2008 data so your “assumption” is that its just happened. Have a look on and you see the figures for Perl haven’t changed much on Freshmeat for many years! (Perl currently shows 3808… back in Apr 2006 it was 3619… thats just a 5% increase).

CPAN on the other hand shows 14923 as at today & 9813 back in Apr 2006. Thats a 52% increase.

So why isn’t Freshmeat showing that? I’m not going to make assumptions to why this is so but it does clearly demonstrate that Freshmeat Perl figures are no longer representative of what goes on in Perl world.



  • I’ve corrected David’s name. I apologise most sincerely for misspelling his surname and using wrong middle initial. ref
  • And I also apologise to David A Whetton whose name I mistakenly used. Fortunately I’ve yet to see an “Angry Perl Users” reply from Mr Whett[o|e]n πŸ˜‰
2 Comments leave one →
  1. Roy permalink
    January 9, 2009 11:54 pm


    Get over it. Perl is deader than Elvis.

  2. January 10, 2009 2:12 pm


    Well like Elvis then Perl seems to be making more money now than when he was alive because it keeps the family & I well fed and very happy πŸ˜‰

    BTW… my post is actually about making sense of Freshmeat figures and not Perl par se.


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