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Making sure everything has been installed properly

Using the Services Menu

Welcome to PerlPad. The following pages will walk you through your first steps, so let us first check if everything has been properly installed.

Services menu

If you installed PerlPad correctly, you should have an item PerlPad in your Services menu. Depending on whether the current application is accepting the service, the services may be inactivated and appear grey. Also note that the keyboard shortcuts (Cmd-Shift-E and Cmd-Shift-R) may have been assigned to the application itself or other services. In that case, you have to use the mouse to run them. That's life.

If you do not have the PerlPad services, you will not have much fun with this walk-through. Please refer to the installation instructions instead.


This tutorial contains a few examples how to use PerlPad. They will appear in textarea input fields. If your browser supports services in its textareas (Safari does) then you can very conveniently use PerlPad directly from the browser. Just select any text in any textarea (such as the one below, that says localtime ) and check the Services menu. The PerlPad services should be available now.

If your browser does not support services, you can use another application as your sandbox. That is less convenient, but there you go. I recommend using Stickies, they have nice, small, yellow, floating windows and both of PerlPad's keyboard shortcuts work.

Quick check

Now that you found your sandbox, type
, select that word and run the evaluation service (Apple-Shift-E if you can use keyboard shortcuts).

The word localtime should be replaced by a message indicating your current time. If not, something is wrong. Try again.
Another thing that happened is that your computer started the PerlPad application (unless it was already running). Don't be scared, it does not bite. And don't close it yet, we will need it soon. Try the localtime trick again. Notice that now that PerlPad is already running everything is much faster? But that is not the only reason we want to have it hang around for a while. I will explain about that later on.

Congratulations, you have just evaluated your first Perl command with PerlPad. But unless you have one of those really big Studio Displays and cannot clearly make out the menu bar clock in the far corner, this lesson was of limited use.

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