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How to use scalars in Perl

Dian Us Suqlain

A variable that, at any given time, stores only a single unit of data such as,

  • an integer
  • a floating-point number
  • a character
  • a string
  • a paragraph
  • an entire web page

is called a scalar variable. Variables in Perl include a () symbol followed by its name.

Numeric and string scalars

In Perl, a scalar can be numeric data or a string.

Scalar types

Code

Example 01

The following code snippet shows how to declare and initialize different scalar variables in Perl, and print them.

$item_no = 69;             # An integer assignment
$item_name = "Nutella";    # A string 
$price = 1269.00;          # A floating point

print "Item number: $item_no\n";
print "Item name: $item_name\n";
print "Price: $price\n";

String scalars

In Perl, string scalars can be initialized with a variable name, followed by a value in double quotes ("") or single quotes ('') .

Example 02

$doublequote = "educative";
$num_string = "69";
$singlequote = 'Volleyball';

print "Simple string in double quote: $doublequote\n";
print "String with numeric values: $num_string\n";
print "String within single quotes: $singlequote\n";
String scalars in Perl

Numeric scalars

Numeric scalar variables can be of multiple types:

  • Integer (positive/negative)
  • Whole numbers.
  • Float/Big float.
  • Double.

Example 03

$integer = 450;             # integer scalar
$negative = -230;           # negative integer
$floating = 786.876;        # floating point
$bigfloat = -5.4e-12;       # big float scalar
$double = 6.9;              # double scalar

print "integer = $integer\n";
print "negative = $negative\n";
print "floating = $floating\n";
print "bigfloat = $bigfloat\n";
print "double = $double\n";
Numeric Scalar in Perl

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