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The animal featured on the cover of CGI Programming with Perl, Second Edition, is a mouse, a rodent of the family Muridae. True, or long-tailed, mice belong to the youngest group in the animal kingdom, approximately 15 million years old. Over 200 species of mice exist, but the most common is the house mouse. The house mouse is the second most widely distributed mammal on Earth, behind only humans. Despite their name, house mice often live in fields, but they usually live near human dwellings. House mice eat almost anything, but they prefer grains and grain products.
Mice reach sexual maturity at two to three months of age. After a gestation period of 20 to 21 days, they deliver a litter averaging six blind, bald, helpless babies. House-dwelling mice can bear young continually, but if overpopulation becomes a problem some female mice will remain infertile.
Mice are often considered to be pests, or worse. They can cause serious crop damage, as well as food contamination. In addition, mice can carry viral, bacterial, and parasitic disease. Despite all this, mice were worshipped in parts of Asia Minor and Greece in ancient times. Today, mice continue to hold an important part in popular culture, often appearing as the heroes of cartoons and books that are ostensibly intended for children, such as Stuart Little, Pinky and the Brain, and, of course, Mickey Mouse.
Nicole Arigo was the production editor and copyeditor for CGI Programming with Perl, Second Edition . Emily Quill proofread the book. Melanie Wang, Mary Anne Weeks Mayo, and Jane Ellin provided quality control. Ellen Troutman Zaig wrote the index.
Edie Freedman designed the cover of this book, using 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.
Alicia Cech and David Futato designed the interior layout based on a series design by Nancy Priest. Mike Sierra implemented the design in FrameMaker 5.5.6. The text and heading fonts are ITC Garamond Light and Garamond Book. The illustrations that appear in the book were produced by Robert Romano and Rhon Porter using Macromedia FreeHand 8 and Adobe Photoshop 5. This colophon was written by Clairemarie Fisher O'Leary.
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