Replacing a value in a hash

Gentlepeople:

I'm horribly frustrated with a web form ...

I've got a form that contains fields "Type" and "Catno".
I've got a cgi script that, using cgi-lib.pl (and written in Perl 4) grabs all the many fields and puts them into a hash (I think), called FORMSTUFF.

As originally conceived, the form allows users to make entries that are inconsistent between Type and Catno, but I've now realized  I can derive Type from Catno, in all cases.

What I've got going now (it works, but it makes the user do the work), is a comparison of two variables containing the initial letters of both fields, and an elaborate if statement that, on disagreement, presents them with an intermediate form in which they can change either value to  agree with the other.

All I want to do is to edit Type to be a predictable text ("ART", "ONL", or "PUB") depending on the first letter of Catno.

I don't understand the syntax, but  the code that works to print the Type field is:
print FILE "$FORMSTUFF{('Type')}\t";              [all single quotes are right quotes]
and the code that works to regenerate it to a summary form on a new screen is:
<B> $FORMSTUFF{('Type')} </B>
But trying to assign with the same syntax, e.g.
if ($vcat eq "A") {
  $FORMSTUFF{('Type')} = "ART"        [do I need a ";" here?]
}
doesn't seem to work.

What would?

It would be inelegant but no problem to me to add an altogether new item to the hash to contain the value, and report that one out INSTEAD of the captured content ... if the fact the form is still open makes replacement impossible.

Many thanks for all ideas!

Marilyn Justman
mjustmanAsked:
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ahoffmannConnect With a Mentor Commented:
> .. [do I need a ";" here?]
YES.

> .. to add an altogether new item to the hash ..
$FORMSTUFF{'new alltogether item'} = 'put your value here';
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mjustmanAuthor Commented:
ok.  If it's as simple as adding the ";", I'll give the old code a new try.

When I tried to add the alltogethernew item, I put double quotes on the right of the "=".  Was that wrong?

Don't anybody else answer till I've tested this and probably given the points to a hoffman!  Thanks.

mj
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ahoffmannCommented:
single quotes quote a string as is, as literal string, while double quotes sunstitute perl variables within the quoted string (see perldoc).
So, in your case it doesn't matter.
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mjustmanAuthor Commented:
Thanks.  A thousand capitalization and punctuation errors later, you were right...it should have worked the first time, with one extra ";".  Now my test stuff seems to be all right.

Also turns out my ISP was having problems the day I was doing this, so just maybe part of my problems weren't caused by me at all...

Marilyn Justman
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