This seemed like it would be easy when I decided to do it but it turned out to be a bit more difficult than I would have thought.

Basically, I've got a file.


that is full of data formatted like this


and in side a script i've got a hash

%stuff (


I want the data to go inside the hash.

I've done this and dozens of other variations

open (OUT, "data.txt") || die "Can't open the data file";

foreach $i ($data[0], $data[1]){
  ($short,$place) = split(/\|/,$i);

         %stuff = (
                          '$short' => '$place',




While there are no errors that are obvious with in the scripts performance, the desired outcome does not happen.

short is supposed to filter to place.

Think of it as a word filter..

Now, it works perfectly when I actually have the hash data there in this format

'short' => 'place',

but I can't get it to properly read and covert from the data file.

Any suggestions or ideas on what I'm doing wrong?

Thanks in advance.

You seem to have skipped the basics of perl. The biggest problem is using single-quotes around your scalar variables, which will not interpolate them but treat them as literal strings. You almost never quote a lone scalar variable anyway. Assuming $data[0] and $data[1] are properly defined:

my %stuff = ();
foreach my $i ($data[0], $data[1]){
  my ($short,$place) = split(/\|/,$i);
  $stuff{$short} = $place;

I assume this is what you are actually trying to do:

my %stuff= ();

open (OUT, "data.txt") || die "Can't open the data file";
while (my $line = <OUT>) {
   chomp $line;
   my ($short,$place) = split(/\|/,$line);
   $stuff{$short} = $place;
close OUT;

foreach my $key (keys %stuff) {
   print "$key = $stuff{$key}\n";
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