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Operating the Deep Seas - Perl

So, when we last left off, I left you lost in a tumultuous sea of data types, variables, and strings. Fortunately for you, you have the black Perl, the world's fastest ship and a magical compass to point you in the right direction. So let's prepare to sail, er, study, and mind the shoals.

  1. Perl: More on Data Types and Operators
  2. Hashes are Yummy
  3. Operating the Deep Seas
  4. Incremental/ Decremental
  5. Comparing Numbers
By: James Payne
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October 15, 2007

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Argh! Thar she blows! The great white whale of the sea -- or, more precisely, the treasure that every Perl diver seeks. In this case, though, it's not something that goes into jewelry, it's something that adds quite a bit of power to your coding. 

Operators in Perl (as in all programming languages) allow you to manipulate data. You've worked with operators ever since elementary school, albeit somewhat differently. 

Just as there are different data types, there are different operators for the different kinds of data. We will go through a bunch of them. First though, how would you like to see a gigantic table full of mind-numbing data? I thought you might.

Mathematical Operators



What it Does













The above operators work just as you think they would. If I wanted to figure out my weekly salary, I could do the follow code:


$hours = 40;

$wage = 20;

$total_salary = $hours * $wage;

print $total_salary

That would give me the following result:


Operators that Assign Values




What it Does


Assign Normally


Assign and Add


Assign and Subtract


Assign and Multiply


Assign and Divide


Assign and Modulate


Assign and Exponentiate

In the previous tutorial we used the = symbol to assign a value to a variable. We can use it for other things as well. For instance, let's say you are the boss's son and have just received your first paycheck. It isn't enough to buy that Porsche you desperately need to compensate for certain characteristics you lack. Well, you can always change it like this:

$pay_rate = 20;


print $pay_rate;

The above example would print your pay rate as being: 100. Another way of looking at it is saying you had written this code instead:

$pay_rate = 20;

$pay_rate=$pay_rate + 80;

print $pay_rate;

You can do the same sort of thing with the other operators above.

>>> More Perl Programming Articles          >>> More By James Payne

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