feature


SYNOPSIS
           use feature qw(say switch);
           given ($foo) {
               when (1)          { say "\$foo == 1" }
               when ([2,3])      { say "\$foo == 2 || \$foo == 3" }
               when (/^a[bc]d$/) { say "\$foo eq 'abd' || \$foo eq 'acd'" }
               when ($_ > 100)   { say "\$foo > 100" }
               default           { say "None of the above" }
           }

           use feature ':5.10'; # loads all features available in perl 5.10

           use v5.10;           # implicitly loads :5.10 feature bundle

DESCRIPTION
       It is usually impossible to add new syntax to Perl without breaking
       some existing programs.  This pragma provides a way to minimize that
       risk. New syntactic constructs, or new semantic meanings to older
       constructs, can be enabled by "use feature 'foo'", and will be parsed
       only when the appropriate feature pragma is in scope.  (Nevertheless,
       the "CORE::" prefix provides access to all Perl keywords, regardless of
       this pragma.)

   Lexical effect
       Like other pragmas ("use strict", for example), features have a lexical
       effect.  "use feature qw(foo)" will only make the feature "foo"
       available from that point to the end of the enclosing block.

           {
               use feature 'say';
               say "say is available here";
           }
           print "But not here.\n";

   "no feature"
       Features can also be turned off by using "no feature "foo"".  This too
       has lexical effect.

           use feature 'say';
           say "say is available here";
           {
               no feature 'say';
               print "But not here.\n";
           }
           say "Yet it is here.";

       "no feature" with no features specified will reset to the default
       group.  To disable all features (an unusual request!) use "no feature
       ':all'".

AVAILABLE FEATURES
   The 'say' feature
       "use feature 'say'" tells the compiler to enable the Perl 6 style "say"

   The 'switch' feature
       "use feature 'switch'" tells the compiler to enable the Perl 6
       given/when construct.

       See "Switch Statements" in perlsyn for details.

       This feature is available starting with Perl 5.10.

   The 'unicode_strings' feature
       "use feature 'unicode_strings'" tells the compiler to use Unicode
       semantics in all string operations executed within its scope (unless
       they are also within the scope of either "use locale" or "use bytes").
       The same applies to all regular expressions compiled within the scope,
       even if executed outside it.  It does not change the internal
       representation of strings, but only how they are interpreted.

       "no feature 'unicode_strings'" tells the compiler to use the
       traditional Perl semantics wherein the native character set semantics
       is used unless it is clear to Perl that Unicode is desired.  This can
       lead to some surprises when the behavior suddenly changes.  (See "The
       "Unicode Bug"" in perlunicode for details.)  For this reason, if you
       are potentially using Unicode in your program, the "use feature
       'unicode_strings'" subpragma is strongly recommended.

       This feature is available starting with Perl 5.12; was almost fully
       implemented in Perl 5.14; and extended in Perl 5.16 to cover
       "quotemeta".

   The 'unicode_eval' and 'evalbytes' features
       Under the "unicode_eval" feature, Perl's "eval" function, when passed a
       string, will evaluate it as a string of characters, ignoring any "use
       utf8" declarations.  "use utf8" exists to declare the encoding of the
       script, which only makes sense for a stream of bytes, not a string of
       characters.  Source filters are forbidden, as they also really only
       make sense on strings of bytes.  Any attempt to activate a source
       filter will result in an error.

       The "evalbytes" feature enables the "evalbytes" keyword, which
       evaluates the argument passed to it as a string of bytes.  It dies if
       the string contains any characters outside the 8-bit range.  Source
       filters work within "evalbytes": they apply to the contents of the
       string being evaluated.

       Together, these two features are intended to replace the historical
       "eval" function, which has (at least) two bugs in it, that cannot
       easily be fixed without breaking existing programs:

       o   "eval" behaves differently depending on the internal encoding of
           the string, sometimes treating its argument as a string of bytes,
           and sometimes as a string of characters.

       o   Source filters activated within "eval" leak out into whichever file
           scope is currently being compiled.  To give an example with the

   The 'current_sub' feature
       This provides the "__SUB__" token that returns a reference to the
       current subroutine or "undef" outside of a subroutine.

       This feature is available starting with Perl 5.16.

   The 'array_base' feature
       This feature supports the legacy $[ variable.  See "$[" in perlvar and
       arybase.  It is on by default but disabled under "use v5.16" (see
       "IMPLICIT LOADING", below).

       This feature is available under this name starting with Perl 5.16.  In
       previous versions, it was simply on all the time, and this pragma knew
       nothing about it.

   The 'fc' feature
       "use feature 'fc'" tells the compiler to enable the "fc" function,
       which implements Unicode casefolding.

       See "fc" in perlfunc for details.

       This feature is available from Perl 5.16 onwards.

   The 'lexical_subs' feature
       WARNING: This feature is still experimental and the implementation may
       change in future versions of Perl.  For this reason, Perl will warn
       when you use the feature, unless you have explicitly disabled the
       warning:

           no warnings "experimental::lexical_subs";

       This enables declaration of subroutines via "my sub foo", "state sub
       foo" and "our sub foo" syntax.  See "Lexical Subroutines" in perlsub
       for details.

       This feature is available from Perl 5.18 onwards.

FEATURE BUNDLES
       It's possible to load multiple features together, using a feature
       bundle.  The name of a feature bundle is prefixed with a colon, to
       distinguish it from an actual feature.

         use feature ":5.10";

       The following feature bundles are available:

         bundle    features included
         --------- -----------------
         :default  array_base

         :5.10     say state switch array_base

         :5.12     say state switch unicode_strings array_base

       Specifying sub-versions such as the 0 in 5.14.0 in feature bundles has
       no effect.  Feature bundles are guaranteed to be the same for all sub-
       versions.

         use feature ":5.14.0";    # same as ":5.14"
         use feature ":5.14.1";    # same as ":5.14"

IMPLICIT LOADING
       Instead of loading feature bundles by name, it is easier to let Perl do
       implicit loading of a feature bundle for you.

       There are two ways to load the "feature" pragma implicitly:

       o   By using the "-E" switch on the Perl command-line instead of "-e".
           That will enable the feature bundle for that version of Perl in the
           main compilation unit (that is, the one-liner that follows "-E").

       o   By explicitly requiring a minimum Perl version number for your
           program, with the "use VERSION" construct.  That is,

               use v5.10.0;

           will do an implicit

               no feature ':all';
               use feature ':5.10';

           and so on.  Note how the trailing sub-version is automatically
           stripped from the version.

           But to avoid portability warnings (see "use" in perlfunc), you may
           prefer:

               use 5.010;

           with the same effect.

           If the required version is older than Perl 5.10, the ":default"
           feature bundle is automatically loaded instead.



perl v5.18.2                      2014-01-06                    feature(3perl)
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