Pratical Extraction and Reporting Language.
Perl is a script programming language that is similar in syntax to the C language and that includes a number of popular Unix facilities such as SED, awk, and tr. Perl is an interpreted language that can optionally be compiled just before execution into either C code or cross-platform bytecode. When compiled, a Perl program is almost (but not quite) as fast as a fully precompiled C language program. Perl is regarded as a good choice for developing common gateway interface (CGI) programs because it has good text manipulation facilities (although it also handles binary files). It was invented by Larry Wall.
When I used to code in C I used to get headaches. Now I use perl and my headaches are gone.