20 years ago tomorrow

20 years ago, on the first of August, the inception of a language started to, well, incept.

Actually, it started a bit earlier than that. Perl was in need of change, so it was decided that the community itself should propose what the language needed to do to go forward one step, from Perl 5 to Perl 6. A call for requests for change was made; every request for change should include possible changes to Perl, as well as, if possible, an implementation proposal, laying out how to proceed. The procedure didn’t lack criticism, but it can’t be said that it was not received, in general, with such an enthusiasm that August 1st already saw the first RFC, pretty much at the same time as some instructions from Larry Wall on how to actually proceed.

The rest is history. It looks a bit like sacred history, since those RFCs were picked up (and apart) by Larry Wall’s apocalypses, explained later by Damian Conway’s exegeses, and roasted in the synopsis, which eventually became the roast repository, the actual specification of the language.

Which is now called Raku. But that’s another story.

To celebrate this part of the history and the people that brought us where we are now, starting tomorrow, we’ll publish 20 articles, one a day, that will focus on one or a few RFCs and show what they eventually became in today’s Raku. So come back every day for a piece of Raku, of history, and of Raku history!

Published by jjmerelo

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