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Our look is the result of reader comments, our own experimentation, and feedback from distribution channels. Distinctive covers complement our distinctive approach to technical topics, breathing personality and life into potentially dry subjects.

The animal featured on the cover of Learning Perl, Third Edition, is the llama, a relation of the camel native to the Andean range. Also included in this llamoid group is the domestic alpaca and their wild ancestors, the guanaco and the vicuna. Bones found in ancient human settlements suggest that domestication of the alpaca and llama dates back 4,500 years. In 1531, when Spanish conquistadors overran the Inca Empire in the high Andes, they found both animals present in great numbers. These llamas are suited for high mountain life; their hemoglobin can take in more oxygen than that of other mammals.

Llamas can weigh up to 300 pounds and are mainly used as beasts of burden. A packtrain may contain several hundred animals and can travel up to twenty miles per day. Llamas will carry loads up to fifty pounds, but have a tendency to be short-tempered and resort to spitting and biting to demonstrate displeasure. To the people of the Andes, llamas also provide meat, wool for clothing, hides for leather, and fat for candles. Their wool can also be braided into rope and rugs, and their dried dung is used for fuel.

Sarah Jane Shangraw and Ann Schirmer were the production editors for Learning Perl, Third Edition. Nicole Arigo copyedited the text. Sarah Jane Shangraw, Ann Schirmer, and Claire Cloutier provided quality control. Kimo Carter, Claire Cloutier, Ann Schirmer, and Sarah Jane Shangraw did interior page composition. Brenda Miller wrote the index.

Edie Freedman designed the cover of this book. The cover image is a 19th-century engraving from the Dover Pictorial Archive. Emma Colby produced the cover layout with QuarkXPress 4.1 using Adobe's ITC Garamond font.

Melanie Wang designed the interior layout based on a series design by Nancy Priest. The text and heading fonts are ITC Garamond Light and Garamond Book; the code font is Constant Willison. The illustrations that appear in the book were produced by Robert Romano and Jessamyn Read using Macromedia FreeHand 9 and Adobe Photoshop 6.

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