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Jan Henning Thorsen


Applify - Write object oriented scripts with ease




This module should keep all the noise away and let you write scripts very easily. These scripts can even be unittested even though they are define directly in the script file and not in a module.


    use Applify;

    option file => input_file => 'File to read from';
    option dir => output_dir => 'Directory to write files to';
    option flag => dry_run => 'Use --no-dry-run to actually do something', 1;

    documentation __FILE__;
    version 1.23;

    sub generate_exit_value {
        return int rand 100;

    app {
        my($self, @extra) = @_;
        my $exit_value = 0;

        print "Extra arguments: @extra\n" if(@extra);
        print "Will read from: ", $self->input_file, "\n";
        print "Will write files to: ", $self->output_dir, "\n";

        if($self->dry_run) {
            die 'Will not run script';

        return $self->generate_exit_value;


This module will generate an application class, which $self inside the "app" block refere to. This class will have:

  • new()

    An object constructor. This method will not be auto generated if any of the classes given to "extends" has the method new().

  • run()

    This method is basically the code block given to "app".

  • Other methods

    Other methods defined in the script file will be accesible from $self inside app{}.

  • _script()

    This is an accessor which return the Applify object which is refered to as $self in this documentation.

    NOTE: This accessor starts with an underscore to prevent conflicts with "options".

  • Other accessors

    Any "option" (application switch) will be available as an accessor on the application object.



    option $type => $name => $documentation;
    option $type => $name => $documentation, $default;
    option $type => $name => $documentation, $default, @args;
    option $type => $name => $documentation, @args;

This function is used to define options which can be given to this application. See "SYNOPSIS" for example code. This function can also be called as a method on $self.

  • $type

    Used to define value types for this input.

    bool, flag
    file (TODO)
    dir (TODO)
  • $name

    The name of an application switch. This name will also be used as accessor name inside the application. Example:

        # define an application switch:
        option file => some_file => '...';
        # call the application from command line:
        > myapp.pl --some-file /foo/bar
        # run the application code:
        app {
            my $self = shift;
            print $self->some_file # prints "/foo/bar"
            return 0;
  • $documentation

    Used as description text when printing the usage text.

  • @args

    • required

      The script will not start if a required field is omitted.

    • n_of

      Allow the option to hold a list of values. Examples: "@", "4", "1,3". See "Options-with-multiple-values" in Getopt::Long for details.

    • Other

      Any other Moose attribute argument may/will be supported in future release.


    documentation __FILE__; # current file
    documentation '/path/to/file';
    documentation 'Some::Module';

Specifies where to retrieve documentaion from when giving the --man switch to your script.


    version 'Some::Module';
    version $num;

Specifies where to retrieve the version number from when giving the --version switch to your script.


    extends @classes;

Specify which classes this application should inherit from. These classes can be Moose based.


    app CODE;

This function will define the code block which is called when the application is started. See "SYNOPSIS" for example code. This function can also be called as a method on $self.

IMPORTANT: This function must be the last function called in the script file for unittests to work. Reason for this is that this function runs the application in void context (started from command line), but returns the application object in list/scalar context (from "do" in perlfunc).



    $array_ref = $self->options;

Holds the application options given to "option".



    $self = $class->new({ options => $array_ref, ... });

Object constructor. Creates a new object representing the script meta information.

Will print "options" to selected filehandle (STDOUT by default) in a normalized matter. Example:

       --foo      Foo does this and that
     * --bar      Bar does something else

       --help     Print this help text
       --man      Display manual for this application
       --version  Print application name and version

Will print "version" to selected filehandle (STDOUT by default) in a normalized matter. Example:

    some-script.pl version 1.23


Will export the functions listed under "EXPORTED FUNCTIONS". The functions will act on a Applify object created by this method.


This library is free software. You can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself.


Jan Henning Thorsen