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Announce: Rakudo Perl 6 development release #23 ("Lisbon")

On behalf of the Rakudo development team, I'm pleased to announce the
November 2009 development release of Rakudo Perl #23 "Lisbon".
Rakudo is an implementation of Perl 6 on the Parrot Virtual Machine
(see http://www.parrot.org). The tarball for the November 2009 release
is available from http://github.com/rakudo/rakudo/downloads

Due to the continued rapid pace of Rakudo development and the frequent
addition of new Perl 6 features and bugfixes, we recommend building Rakudo
from the latest source, available from the main repository at github.
More details are available at http://rakudo.org/how-to-get-rakudo.

Rakudo Perl follows a monthly release cycle, with each release code
named after a Perl Mongers group. The November 2009 release is code
named "Lisbon" for Lisbon.pm, who did a marvellous job arranging this
year's YAPC::EU.

Shortly after the October 2009 (#22) release, the Rakudo team
began a new branch of Rakudo development ("ng") that refactors
the grammar to much more closely align with STD.pm as well as
update some core features that have been difficult to achieve
in the master branch [1, 2]. Most of our effort for the past month
has been in this new branch, but as of the release date the new
version had not sufficiently progressed to be the release copy.
We expect to have the new version in place in the December 2009 release.

This release of Rakudo requires Parrot 1.8.0. One must still
perform "make install" in the Rakudo directory before the "perl6"
executable will run anywhere other than the Rakudo build directory.
For the latest information on building and using Rakudo Perl, see the
readme file section titled "Building and invoking Rakudo".

Some of the specific changes and improvements occuring with this
release include:

* Rakudo is now passing 32,753 spectests, an increase of 171 passing
  tests since the October 2009 release. With this release Rakudo is
  now passing 85.5% of the available spectest suite.

* As mentioned above, most development effort for Rakudo in November
  has taken place in the "ng" branch, and will likely be reflected
  in the December 2009 release.

* Rakudo now supports unpacking of arrays, hashes and objects in
  signatures

* Rakudo has been updated to use Parrot's new internal calling conventions,
  resulting in a slight performance increase.

The development team thanks all of our contributors and sponsors for
making Rakudo Perl possible. If you would like to contribute,
see http://rakudo.org/how-to-help , ask on the perl6-compiler@perl.org
mailing list, or ask on IRC #perl6 on freenode.

The next release of Rakudo (#24) is scheduled for December 17, 2009.
A list of the other planned release dates and codenames for 2009 is
available in the "docs/release_guide.pod" file. In general, Rakudo
development releases are scheduled to occur two days after each
Parrot monthly release. Parrot releases the third Tuesday of each month.

Have fun!

[1] http://use.perl.org/~pmichaud/journal/39779
[2] http://use.perl.org/~pmichaud/journal/39874
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