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a) There's a recent thread here (I think in meditations, "Perl idioms explained", but I'll look it up for you) that explains what happens with // and //g. In short: you need to use //g in list context, and extract the count from there.

$count = () = $data =~ m/and/g;

Update: Got it: Perl Idioms Explained - @ary = $str =~ m/(stuff)/g

b) Even if it's another "and"? Use lookahead.

my($next_word) = /and(?=\W*(\w+))/;
You can use list context again, in which case you'll get a list of list of matches, but flattened.
my @pairs = /(and)(?=\W*(\w+))/g;
Test script:
$_ = 'foo and bar and baz went to the sea.'; my @pairs = /(and)(?=\W*(\w+))/g; print join "#", @pairs;

c) That's just his point of view. Tastes vary. I happen to disagree. But that's just me. :)

d) Dunno. Maybe you should try out one of those template modules. That way you can separate code (script) from design (template). There's a nice list in the intro chapter of the Mason book: chapter 1

There's also a comparative list in this article on <>: Choosing a Templating System

In reply to Re: a Couple of questions! by bart
in thread a Couple of questions! by Nik

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