http://qs1969.pair.com?node_id=317267

Store a number as a string, while using up less space than if you were to write out the whole number. Example: The number 1819436368 (10 chars) can be stored as the string "Perl" (4 chars). Useful when you need to save on space. See node 317125.
#!/usr/bin/perl -W # Takes a number between 0 and 2^32, # returns 4 characters (ASCII). sub num_to_chars { my $packed = pack( "l", $_[0] ); return unpack( "A*", $packed ); } # Takes 4 ASCII chars, returns a "long" sub chars_to_num { my $chars = pack( "A*", $_[0] ); return unpack( "l", $chars ); }