A useful, usable, “early adopter” distribution of Perl 6
On behalf of the Rakudo and Perl 6 development teams, I’m happy to announce the July 2015 release of “Rakudo Star”, a useful and usable distribution of Perl 6. The tarball for the July 2015 release is available from http://rakudo.org/downloads/star/.
This Rakudo Star release comes with support for the MoarVM backend (all module tests pass on supported platforms).
In the Perl 6 world, we make a distinction between the language (“Perl 6”) and specific implementations of the language such as “Rakudo Perl”. This Star release includes release 2015.07.2 of the Rakudo Perl 6 compiler, version 2015.07 of MoarVM, plus various modules, documentation, and other resources collected from the Perl 6 community.
Some of the new compiler features added to this release include:
- Cool.substr(-rw) and &substr(-rw) now also accept a Range
- Added trait “is required” on class attributes
- &?ROUTINE and &?BLOCK
- &words implemented (to completement .words)
- Numeric comparison ops (== > etc) for DateTimes
- samewith() now also works in subs
- Calling the .clone method with alternate values no longer changes original
- .grep and &grep now consume multiple elements for many-param blocks
- ENTER phaser now can be used as an r-value
Notable changes in modules shipped with Rakudo Star:
- Bailador: Add links to documentation
- DBIish: Use Postgres environment variables for test configuration
- doc: More documentation, mostly for IO-related classes and methods
There are some key features of Perl 6 that Rakudo Star does not yet handle appropriately, although they will appear in upcoming releases. Some of the not-quite-there features include:
- advanced macros
- non-blocking I/O (in progress)
- much of Synopsis 9 and 11
There is an online resource at http://perl6.org/compilers/features that lists the known implemented and missing features of Rakudo’s backends and other Perl 6 implementations.
In many places we’ve tried to make Rakudo smart enough to inform the programmer that a given feature isn’t implemented, but there are many that we’ve missed. Bug reports about missing and broken features are welcomed at firstname.lastname@example.org.
See http://perl6.org/ for links to much more information about Perl 6, including documentation, example code, tutorials, reference materials, specification documents, and other supporting resources. A draft of a Perl 6 book is available as docs/UsingPerl6-draft.pdf in the release tarball.
The development team thanks all of the contributors and sponsors for making Rakudo Star possible. If you would like to contribute, see http://rakudo.org/how-to-help, ask on the email@example.com mailing list, or join us on IRC #perl6 on freenode.