in reply to Updating scripts from late 90's

According to perlhist - 1998 included the release to 5.005. But, these scripts of yours could have been written for any version up to and including that.

I suggest you check perlhist for a comprehensive list of changes to Perl.
"But what of all those sweet words you spoke in private?"
"Oh that's just what we call pillow talk, baby, that's all."