local($nextvar) = scalar <STDIN>;
<STDIN> from reading all the lines from
standard input before doing the assignment, since assignment to a local list provides a list context. (Without the use of
scalar in this example, the first line from
<STDIN> would still be assigned to
$nextvar, but the subsequent lines would be read and thrown
away. This is because the assignment is being made to a list - one that
happens to be able to receive only a single, scalar value.)
Of course, a simpler way with less typing would be to simply leave the parentheses off, thereby changing the list context to a scalar one:
local $nextvar = <STDIN>;
Since a print function is a
LIST operator, you have to say:
print "Length is ", scalar(@ARRAY), "\n";
if you want the length of
@ARRAY to be printed out.
One never needs to force evaluation in a list context, because any operation that wants a list already provides a list context to its list arguments for free. So there's no list function corresponding to scalar.