Spammers Using Copyright Notices…

Hello folks.  I’m sure many of you are well-aware of my general dislike for copyright, but particularly as it relates to restricting private individuals.  Well tonight I got a spam email from one of these do-it-yourself business scammers, and it seems like this is a real company.  For some reason these idiots thought that I would comply with their privacy and copy prohibition notice.

This is probably a bit mean of me, but I’m putting this post up just to make sure that the folks over at franalysis.com know that I’m not interested in their scam, and that I do not agree to their privacy or copy prohibition notice.  Petty?  Probably.  I’m just tired of being harassed by scam businesses and I’m tired of idiotic copyright notices.

Hi Michael,

Your resume sparked some interest with one of our Senior Franchise
Consultants and they would like to speak with you. Your credentials are
quite impressive and therefore would like to see if owning a franchise
business would be an idea that you might consider. We have helped many
established professionals research the best qualified franchises available.

Depending on the industry and location that you specify, we will present to
you the best geographic and financially available franchises. The research,
qualification, and application service we provide costs you absolutely
nothing.

This is a unique opportunity that would allow you to apply your experience
to a business of your own, increasing your earning potential and allowing
you some much deserved flexibility in your career.

Please visit us at www.fran-partners.com and fill out the “Get Started
Today” form for more information.

Best regards,

Michelle [Last Name Removed]
Franchising Coordinator
469-619-3164
www.fran-partners.com
13355 Noel Road Suite 210
Dallas, TX 75240

Privileged/Confidential Information may be contained in this message. If
you are not the addressee indicated in this message (or responsible for
delivery of the message to such person), you may not copy or deliver this
message to anyone. In such case, you should destroy this message, and
notify us immediately.

The Hipocracy of the Wal-Mart Haters…

<<EORANT

So, I’ve got a little rant for all of the big box retail haters out there.  Do you visit Starbucks?  How about McDonalds or Burger King?  What about software, do you use Windows or MacOS?  Have you purchased a Dell or an HP or a Mac?  Do you have an iPod or a wireless phone?  Do you listen to the Black-Eyed Peas, or Destiny’s Child, or any number of other pop artists?  How can you possibly criticize Wal-Mart and put yourself on some sort of ethical pedestal when you’re doing any of these things?

Starbucks, McDonalds, Burger King, Taco Bell, and many other food service corporations have been under-paying their workers much worse for a much longer period of time than any big-box store ever has.  These companies have damaged our health with trans-fats and high-fat foods, they’ve damaged our culture by forcing smaller restaurants and coffee shops and burger joints out of business, and they’ve drained our local economies by taking the money we spend at their establishments and moving it back to the hometown of their local establishments.

Microsoft and Apple have not only been forcing other companies out of business, but they’ve been hiring foreign workers for the sole purpose of paying them below market wages.  They’ve also been spending millions on figuring out how to restrict what you can do with what you purchase more effectively, and with fewer possibilities that you’ll be able to work around it.

iPod, along with every phone manufacturer have released heavy-metal laden phones that are 100% proprietary devices that lock you in for years.   Your iPod is designed to only work with iTunes–though some have figured out how to reverse-engineer that–and your wireless phones are locked to their carriers.  If you’re a Verizon Wireless customer than you’re even actively funding a campaign that VZW has under-taken to undermine the FCC’s push to free networks, specifically with respect to the new bandwidth that is being auctioned off.  AT&T has actually been implicated–and is currently seeking congressional protection from prosecution and civil litigation–in illegal wire-taps that violate your constitutional rights, yet folks are gobbling up the iPhone like there’s no tomorrow.

Popular music is destroying our culture by manufacturing “artists” who produce music that the record companies think will be profitable.  The incidence of actual artists being discovered and making it big in the recording industry is become less and less common.  Disney has manufactured dozens of “artists” that we now revere as highly talented… but are nothing more than a factory working punching the proper product codes into the machines on the production line.  These recording companies have also been suing consumers left and right for using the media that they purchased in a way that they want to.  They’ve been getting college campuses to have mandatory courses on not sharing with your friends, and have spent billions trying to tell you that sharing is really stealing… all funded by state and federal tax dollars.

So, to me, Wal-Mart sounds pretty damned good by comparison.  I’m not one to justify one group’s bad behavior by pointing out the bad behavior of others, but it seems like some folks have forgotten about consistency.  I understand that sometimes it’s important to pick on the politically unpopular bad guys more than the popular bad guys when you’re trying to pass yourself off as a pinko “non-conformist” moron, and that’s okay.  But I don’t want to hear a damned thing from one of you jerk-offs next time I tell you that my mother-in-law found me a really sweet wok at Wal-Mart.

I also don’t want to hear you all crying about religions being inconsistent.  If you idiots can’t figure out how to be consistent in something as simple as where you shop, I don’t think you have any business criticizing the consistency of something much more complicated like religion or politics.

EORANT;

Warmongers: The New Pervert…

So, I’ve recently say that pedophiles are the worst people ever. If you live in the US, you’ve likely heard similar statements. It’s kinda crazy in the first place when you hear someone say this because–to me at least–what they’re really saying is “I am such a better person than a pedophile” or “regardless of the bad things I’ve done in my life, a pedophile is so much worse.” For the vast majority of people walking this earth right now, I would summarily reject that entire mentality outright. The very concept of ethically or morally justifying yourself by pointing out the bad behaviors of other is flawed. Even more than that, however, if you were to look at bad behavior, pedophilia is not even in the top-ten things you could do to damage society as a whole.

I’ll start off with a quick disclaimer on this paragraph. I am not a pedophile, I do not condone pedophilia, and under no circumstances would I ever do anything to minimize the damage that sexual abuse does to an individual and their family. Pedophilia, like many other crimes, damages people and communities. I am not trying to minimize this at all, just pointing out that while this is a horrible thing, there are worse things even than this.

What could possibly be worse than pedophilia? A warmonger. What is a warmonger? According to the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, a warmonger is “a person who advocates, endorses, or tries to precipitate war.” Several other dictionaries have similar definitions, but add that it is someone who does these things for personal gain. So what would someone seek to gain from war? Power, resources, money, land, religious zealotry, bigotry, self-righteous indignation, and everybody’s favorite: blind nationalism.

Blind nationalism is the one I think I see the most, but often times I see a combination of self-righteous indignation and blind nationalism. These two motives really do go hand-in-hand, don’t they? Think about it, one of the components of a nationalistic ideology is the “us versus them” mentality. Self-righteous indignation also has a similar mentality behind it. I think to a certain degree–remember, I’m not a sociologist or a political scientist, I’m but a humble geek trying to share my thoughts on the subject–these two things can morph into the exact same thing.

Am I talking about the Iraq war? No, I’m not talking about the Iraq war specifically in this. I’m talking about all violent action, excepting self-defense, including that which is done to enforce the law. Wow, that’s a pretty big thing to say there, isn’t it? Gosh, I must be some sort of communistic coward or pacifist or something, eh? No, I just realize that what my mom told me when I was a kid is still true to this day: hitting hurts. It does, I’ll show you. Try slapping yourself on the left arm with your right hand. That hurt a bit, didn’t it? See, I’m not making this up. And while hitting hurts, shooting hurts worse, bombing hurts worse, and stabbing hurts worse. That said, the “war on terror” is actually an excellent example–in my uneducated opinion–for this quick little study.

You know what I frequently hear that makes my skin crawl? You’ve heard it to, you know you have, it’s the old saying “freedom isn’t free.” What a statement. Anybody whose ever paid taxes sure knows that one, eh? When someone says “freedom isn’t free” in order to justify war I actually think it cheapens the entire concept of freedom. They’re saying that in order to be free, you must use violence to continue its exercise in the future. So in order to be a free person now, by their reasoning, if you are not okay with the use of violence and coercion for the sake of freedom then you are in some way in opposition to it. I think it’s even worse for the folks who have never served–which I admittedly have not served–in the armed forces. These people are saying “freedom is not free, but why don’t you pick up the bill Mr. Soldier?” I’m not a soldier, but I would think that most wish that while freedom isn’t free, that it took another form of payment. You know, like diplomacy.

So, now I guess some of you are thinking that I’m anti-military. Am I? Well, kind of, but not really. You see, I think the military is a great business. It gets young folks discipline, skills, money for college, and it does give us the ability to immediately defend ourselves. It also gives our government a great opportunity to give back to our society. WHAT?! Give back to our society? Did I just say that? Yes, I did.

The Jeep, computers, the Internet, duct tape, all of these things began as military research and inventions. Yeah, without the military there would be no duct tape, and we’d all be worse off without duct tape and you know it. So if I’m not against the military, what am I against? I’m against the offensive utilization of the military without a proven defensive purpose… and no, a bunch of bigots in the middle of the desert–even if they did pull off 9/11–is not a proven defensive purpose. Not even law enforcement is a proven defensive purpose. The only thing I would think that constitutes a proven defensive purpose is a substantiated credible threat that someone was invading or aiming a weapon at someone that the respective military force was charged with protecting. That doesn’t mean “he’s amassing WMD” but it would mean “he’s pointing WMD at us that we know can reach us and we have reason to believe that he will fire.”

So, now that we’ve gone through that spiel, how is a warmonger like a pervert? Well, I don’t know about you, but the reports I’m hearing are that war kills an awful lot of people, harms an awful lot of people, and results in a temporary or semi-permanent state of lawlessness that also hurts an awful lot of people. Pedophiles and rapists only hurt a handful of people. One rapist can hurt several people, one bomb–even a smart-bomb–can hurt several dozen if not several hundred (or in some cases several million) people. But a warmonger isn’t necessarily the one who is actually dropping the bomb, now are they? And a pervert isn’t necessarily the one who is abusing the victim either. Instead they’re both people who in some way get off on the idea of the wrong being done. Perverts get off on sexual abuse and/or deviance, warmongers get off on military forces killing and maiming. You see where I’m drawing the parallel?

Now, before you go off trying to defend George Bush or the Iraq war or whatnot, please understand that I’m not attacking George Bush or the Iraq war in the slightest. I am actually just pointing out that war is a bad thing–even when it’s necessary it is still bad–and that warmongers are the new pervert. Even if a war was necessary, it is still not okay to think of it in a good light. There is nothing good about war, ever.

So who am I calling a warmonger? Well, if you have ever said “freedom isn’t free,” have used the phrase “anti-war rhetoric,” have accused someone of being “anti-American,” or have in any way put war in a light that is in any way positive–other than citing with much resignation that it is necessary–then I am calling you a warmonger. If you are thinking of sending me an email to tell me how I should be thankful to the men and women who died to defend my freedom, you might also be a warmonger. This isn’t to say that I shouldn’t be thankful to those who defend freedom, and I am, this is merely to say that if you feel the moral imperative to tell me this than you are probably a warmonger. You might be a warmonger out of a flawed sense of nationalism, you might be a warmonger out of self-righteous indignation, you might be a warmonger because you never really thought of war as a bad thing, but for any of those reasons you would still be a warmonger.

Warmongering, however, I wouldn’t limit to war. I would say that those who advocate the assassination of foreign officials or diplomats or the use of deadly force to enforce the law–barring self-defense in the course of enforcing the law–are also warmongers.

So, why did I just spend a crapload of time writing an article about how I think warmongers are perverts? Because I’m pretty much just sick of it. I’m sick of this ridiculous idea that if you are not for all wars and all edicts of Washington that you are somehow in opposition to America or freedom. To all those who would suggest I should move out of the United States for holding these views, bite me. You can take your all-encompassing nationalism, your American flag bumper sticker, and your bald eagle hood ornament and shove them all right up your ass (be sure to use safe-sex practices, though). There aren’t enough yellow ribbons or American flag bumper stickers in the world to justify our more recent wars. This isn’t a sports team where you route for your team and poke fun at the opposing team with the us-versus-them thing going on. This is real life, and real people are dying, and real people are getting hurt.

Right now, in a land far away from the vast majority of those reading this post, somebody’s child is being hurt… think about that, it’s not a happy thought now is it?

So what do we do? Am I going to point out a problem without offering a solution? No, I wouldn’t do something like that. Here’s what we do: first, we create a 12-step program for warmongers. We could probably adapt the pornography addicts program for this. Then we hold our elected officials to account. When a politician is warmongering, we call them on it. Let’s get it through our thick skulls that killing people is a bad thing to do. Let’s learn from our philosophers and great thinkers and leaders and realize that there is nothing to be gained from hurting others. Let’s also get rid of this idea that violence is a good thing. There were many who cheered when Saddam Hussein was executed, why? Since when has death ever been something we cheer about? Even if the Iraqi people thought it necessary to put Mr. Hussein to death, why is that something that someone should smile about? That is a perverted frame of mind and we must do what we can to get that out of our culture.

In closing, I’m sure I’m gonna get flamed in the comments and via email on this one and that’s okay, but I hope that I will some day soon know the joy of living in a society that values life and that values peace.

Caller Tunes Defeat Automated Dialers!

So, I’ve had this collection agency calling me trying to get someone who doesn’t live here. They’ve been calling me on my mobile phone, and when I told them that they had the wrong number, they kept on calling. I even called their corporate office and they wanted all my personal information before they’d take me off of their list (e.g. my social security number, date of birth, name, address, employer, etc). Not gonna happen. That information doesn’t get given out to cold-calling collection agencies who have the wrong number.

So, as you know I recently switched to tmobile, and they have this nifty feature called “Caller Tunes”. For $1.49/mo you can get a song played to your callers instead of a ring tone. That’s kinda neat, I’m using the Super Mario theme. So shortly after that happened, I noticed that all of the calls from this collection agency were dropping before anybody came to the line.

At first I just thought that this was some error with just this collection agency, but recently an insurance agency has been trying to call me to sell me insurance. Sure enough their automated dailer was put off by this as well. All of these predictive dialers seem to be failing because of caller tunes. I suspect that this is because the automated dialers are trying to figure out when the ringing stops and when the answering machine begins. They don’t want to spend a real person’s time leaving voice-mail messages when they could just have a recording doing it. So, just like fudging text to beat a swear filter, this throws off predictive dialers because the pattern they were expecting never appeared.

It’s hilarious, and if you have a problem with predictive dialers and your phone carrier has this service, I highly recommend you try it out. It works for me.

USA Wake Up.org: Cowards and Racists Spreading Lies

So, have you been to http://usawakeup.org/ yet? This site is disgusting, racist, and vile. These cowards put up fear-mongering half-truths for the general public and then turn around to use it as justification for reducing civil liberties and permitting racial profiling. Their supporters came on my blog on November 28th and called me a “communist” for saying that I like diversity. A communist? Really? Ron Paul people said that, too.

According to Wikipedia (article here), Communism is “an ideology that seeks to establish a classless, stateless social organization based on common ownership of the means of production.” Wow, that sounds much different than what I’m talking about. Doesn’t sound all that horrible, but it certainly isn’t what I’m talking about here at all. Good call Ron Paul fascists and USA Wake Up morons, Communism is it?

If you have actually taken the time to watch the ignorant flash video where they put up all sorts of “evidence” and “expert” statements, all the while failing miserably to cite any of it. Their immigration chart has some sort of sourcing on it, but the image is pretty low-res and I can’t read it. Interesting. Their assertion that “terrorists” could take out our power grids like that just sounds like science fiction to me, but what do I know? I’m a communist, remember?

Now, in this video there are several things that they put out as “good” things. Things like racial profiling, the USA Patriot Act, and absolute American economic domination. Then there are things that they put out there as bad things. Things like immigration, religious and ethnic diversity, and campus groups that help folks exercise their religious belief and freedom. It seems to me that these folks are declaring freedom just as much an enemy as terrorism. I don’t know about you, but none of the measures they’re supporting sound like they are in any way in support of freedom.

So why am I writing this post? Afterall, it has been a while since I’ve blogged here. You all probably thought I was dead or something. No, I’m not dead. We’re just super busy getting ready for this baby to come. That’s why I’m kinda worried about cowards and racists like USA Wake Up.org. I’m scared that they’re going to destroy freedom. I’m worried that one day, if my son decides to get a great tan, or marries an Arabic or Hispanic lady, or converts to Islam–not my way, but I am pro-freedom so this is something that he should be allowed to do if he so chooses–that him or his family would be treated like second-class citizens. You know, like the way these pricks over at USA Wake Up.org are treating Muslims and Hispanics right now.

These guys make me sick, they don’t substantiate how any of this is a real threat. So what if the ethnic climate of our country shifts? So what if whiter skin becomes the minority in favor of another skin color? I don’t care, race isn’t important enough to me for me to be worried about that. I welcome Muslims and Hispanics with open arms. I’m not stupid enough to equate what a hand-full of people do with what an entire ethnicity is doing.

Who’s the real threat to this country? It’s not Mexico and it’s not Muslims, it is USA Wake Up.org. I’m sure God is proud of how these people are treating their fellow human beings. Real proud.

Highway Robbery by Domain Brokers

So, on June 15th of 2007 I wrote this letter to the current domain broker owning notsosoft.com:

You all have a parked domain at notsosoft.com. I’m wondering if you would be willing to sell it at a reasonable price since it’s just parked. Thanks.

Today I got a reply from them. Here is the reply:

Hi Man Chicken,
Thank you for your interest in notsosoft.com. We are currently not
entertaining offers below $3500 for three-word generic terms with the
expectation of a higher price upon receiving a proper evaluation. If
this is out of your price range I will be more than happy to search our
portfolio for a domain that better suits your needs. I look forward to
hearing from you.

Thank You,

Lauren [snip for privacy reasons]
Sales Operations
[snip for privacy reasons]
www.iREIT.com

This is insane. These people actually think they’re going to receive $3,500 USD for this domain? It’s been parked for at least three years, and I seriously doubt they’re receiving offers from anybody other than bloggers such as myself.

Now, I know that you all may argue that this is the free market, and all’s fair and blah blah blah… but these companies are doing this everywhere. Almost any domain you try to find these days is either used by someone else for their legitimate purpose, or is parked by some horse-crap domain broker. This is wrong because it excludes startups and normal folks like you and me from actually being able to get into many domain names. The reason why we’ve got so many new domain suffixes popping up isn’t because the domains are all being used by legitimate folks, it’s because they’re all being parked by idiots like this.

I understand it’s a business model that many think is harmless advertising, but it really is harming the ability of normal folks online to express themselves using logically named domains. Either way, I hope these folks enjoy their domain, because they’ll have it for a long time.

On Ubuntu…

Okay… so we’ve had this discussion going on for a long time. In the BadVista mailing lists Ubuntu has taken quite a beating due to its default inclusion of non-free hardware drivers. Well, that and the use of the words “open source” where the words “free software” are more appropriate.

Well, I’ve been a Kubuntu hacker since December of 2006, and I am not tickling Mark Shuttleworth’s brain, or reading the minds of the management at Canonical. But I do know that everything I’ve received as a developer on the Kubuntu project leads me to believe that Ubuntu does have some very serious love for free software, but there’s a lot of “open source” to be found there as well.

So I’ll rant on two ideas I have on how Ubuntu could really solve some of the ethical concerns from the community, and how the community should reconsider its position on Ubuntu. Before folks call me inconsistent on this point–I have argued both sides several times–let’s remember that we’re all still learning here, and we’re all still figuring out what strategy will make us more free and meet our own needs. You can call my inconsistent or a hypocrite, and you’d be right, so I’ll just go ahead and get that out of the way.

First, let’s talk non-free drivers. I know this is a powder-keg, and it seems as though everybody’s got a very strong opinion it. Let me ask you though… is it Ubuntu’s fault that these drivers are not free software? Did Ubuntu or Canonical insist on licensing them as non-free software? I doubt it. Actually, I think Ubuntu would be ecstatic if nVidia, ATI, and Broadcom (to name a few) called them up tomorrow and offered to give them specs or free software drivers. I sincerely believe that.

So then, what is Ubuntu guilty of in this situation? Including the drivers, right? Well, why do you think they included the drivers? Do you think they’re making money from ATI or nVidia to include these drivers? I don’t. I think they’re actually catching a lot of crap for including them, but that in the best interest of the users who bought hardware that does not allow for a fully free system they’re accommodating a large audience of previously non-free people who can now be more free. There’s the argument of freedom of choice and all that, yadda yadda yadda. Whatever.

If you know that nVidia is non-free, and you buy it anyway, then you are supporting a company that is against your freedom. End of story on hat one. But if you’re Mr. Smith who bought this sweet laptop, and later found out that he could have more freedom with his computer, and then after the fact realizes that it has a non-free graphics card in it, that’s not his fault. He didn’t know anything about software freedom before, and he doesn’t have the cash to upgrade to a machine that does support a fully-free environment. Have you looked at the prices of a tweaked out lappy these days? They’re certainly not free, and you can’t just swap out the video card. Besides, nVidia already made their money, so it’s no further support to them by using it.

All this to say that it is nVidia’s fault and ATI’s fault and Broadcom’s fault that these drivers are non-free. Mr. Smith will know not to buy from fascists later, but this time around he’s pretty much screwed. Let’s not blame Ubuntu for nVidia’s crimes. But there is something that I feel Ubuntu could do to help things out a little bit.

Offer a choice. I know that it’s simple to just not activate the non-free modules or to purge them, but I don’t even want that rubbish on my computer to start with because I do not agree with their license agreement. So what choice would I like to see? I’m glad you asked. I’d like to see two ISOs for every Ubuntu flavor. One that meets Mr. Smith’s needs with his non-free hardware, and one that meets my needs as a user who wants a completely free system.

I know that there’s talk of a GNUbuntu or FSF-approved flavor of Ubuntu, but I don’t even think Canonical should waste the marketing money on that. I think we should just have “Kubuntu-free,” “Ubuntu-free,” “Edubuntu-free,” and “Xubuntu-free.” In a perfect world, the free versions would be the default ISOs (e.g. Ubuntu and Ubuntu-nonfree rather than Ubuntu and Ubuntu-free), but I’ll take what I can get.

All that said, I am 100% the Ubuntu fanboy. I’ve been using Kubuntu for the better half of a year and there’s not much in the way of going back for me. Ubuntu is an excellent distribution, and Kubuntu does some insanely cool things to further KDE. There are plenty of folks criticizing Ubuntu because they want to see it fail and something else succeed. I criticize Ubuntu because I think it’s a great project, and there is always room for improvement.

Okay, I’m done ranting for now. Feel free to disagree.

DRM-Fascists Just Don’t Learn…

Wow. So, Sony, you think that DRM stops people from sharing content, eh? Is that so? I search the torrents (I just searched, didn’t download, so you can heel your blood-thirsty attorneys) for two of the films mentioned in this article (Casino Royal and Rocky Balboa). Casino Royal came up with more than 62 active downloads from various–undoubtedly anonymous untrackable–sources, and Rocky Balboa came up with more than 277 various–also undoubtedly anonymous untrackable–sources.

Why would I mention this? Because DRM isn’t working. You can still share this content without any restriction. Those who want to download the content are going to do so regardless of restriction. Hell, a third of those download sources are probably in countries where they thumb their noses at our overbearing copyright laws. So why then, Sony, do you insist on making the lives of ordinary folks harder because of your paranoia that is obviously not paying off? DRM is a cat and mouse game, and until you can get the consumer market on board with DRM–not gonna happen–and convince the to buy new devices every six months, DRM will always be countered rather quickly. All you’re doing is screwing things up for the rest of us.

For those of you who didn’t read the article before, click here to read it.

Excuse Me Sir, But…

Okay, so have any of you heard “excuse me sir, but…” lately? I heard it three times today and none of them had done anything prior to excusing themselves that would warrant an excuse.

When did it become okay to apologize before doing something to hurt or inconvenience someone unless it was requested or unnecessary? We’re not talking about a nurse saying “sorry, but you’ll feel a little pin-prick,” we’re talking about “excuse me sir, but can I waste 15 minutes of your life while I ramble on about an expensive dish network system that will lock you into a 12-month contract with huge penalties?”

Anyway, I just thought I’d complain about this tonight. Dish Network, shut up and leave me alone. The rest of you, thanks for reading my rant.

Why Perl is Ideal for All of Your Automated Testing (2 of 4)

In this installment I will explain why Perl is the ideal language to automate your tests for any application at the unit level.

There’s been a lot of difference of opinion on what unit testing is supposed to be. I think this is a good discussion, but I don’t think it goes anywhere near addressing this point. Therefore, I shall define what unit testing is in my words, and that is the definition that we’ll use for this explanation. Unit testing, in my view, is testing at the simplest level–or unit–of an application code. This will be at the function level, at the class/object level, at the instruction-set level, etc. The unit test is a test that cannot be made any more atomic without being redundant on a dependency’s own testing.

In this scenario…

int add_two(int a, int b) {
  fprintf(stdout,"Adding %d and %dn",a,b);
  return (a + b);
}

int add_three(int a, int b, int c) {
  return add_two(add_two(a,b),c);
}

with unit-level testing you would create a unit test for both add_two() and add_three() individually, and not for fprintf(). (yeah, I know that is making it very obvious, but some folks may need the verbosity)

Okay, so now that we understand unit testing, the question remains… why Perl? What an excellent question! So many people know how Perl is used for web applications and also for various other programs and scripts, but one thing you may not have known is that Perl also has an outstanding set of modules that make up an awesome testing framework. Check this out:

Perl Testing Reference Card

This is a reference card put out by the Perl QA folks, and it’s been passed around a lot. I like it. Clearly there has been a lot of emphasis put on automated testing in Perl (one of the reasons why it’ll work).

Perl is portable. There is a stable and usable Perl for every operating system I’ve used, and most that I’ve heard of, and most Perl scripts seem to be mostly portable. The only time one seems to be non-portable is when the use of an external library (via XS or other means) is found.

Perl can make use of other non-Perl languages. Anybody here program anything in JavaScript? Well, there’s Test::JavaScript for your testing needs. There’s even JavaScript modules if you want to directly interact with JavaScript through SpiderMonkey. What about Java? Inline::Java will take care of those folks. Python? There are Python libraries. C? Inline::C. Ruby? Inline::Ruby. Anything win32 could make use of the Win32::API module.

Perl focuses a lot of time and energy on testing. I think we could all make use of this effort. I also think most of us (all of us if we’re being honest with ourselves) could agree that we all could use more automated tests.

Will you be able to shoot holes in my argument? Sure. Is the word “ideal” for all of those situations a bit of a stretch? You caught me. But if this gets you thinking about automated testing, and gets you thinking about Perl, then my job here is done. See you tomorrow folks, when we’ll talk about integration and functional testing.