To go with the very latest - even if the customers don't have it in common use yet, or to stay with older and well loved versions even though there is a new model out? A thorny question and one I'm addressing at the moment for the 2008 brochure. I write ...
"""With a few notable exceptions, Open Source programming languages and operating systems change very little from one release to the next in terms of how the programmer uses them for fundamental tasks. And when you think of it, that's a very good feature as it helps to extend the life cycle of code. It also means that few users are in a rush to upgrade to the very latest release when it come out, and indeed many people take a sensible decision to freeze with a software version for quite long periods.
In general, it's our philosophy to install a recent stable version that's in common use for our delegates to use on each delegate system. Training notes are updated to include information on significant changes in the very latest versions, and in some cases on published plans for enhancements in upcoming releases. Additional demonstration systems/versions are provided where there is a significant new release that isn't yet in common or stable use, or where there is an older version that remains common and may be used by the delegates in their day to day work.
Perl version 5 has been around for many years, and forms the core of our Perl training. We have already been talking with delegates about Perl 6, helping them to be prepared to take best advantage of it when it comes into common use - but we don't see that changeover happening at all quickly. As and when stable versions of Perl 6 become available during the life of this brochure, we will provide firstly demonstrations and then both versions on delegate's systems.
Exceptionally, the change from Perl 5 to native Perl 6 will be a big one, and when the time is appropriate we may offer separate courses and "Perl 6 for Perl 5 programmers" days too. Please watch our web site for details
• Apache httpd and Tomcat web servers.
- Linux with httpd
- Linux with both
We are mostly training on httpd version 2.2 (to include the new proxy balancer where appropriate) but with some systems on 2.0 and comment back to 1.3; On Tomcat, current version is 6, but with a great deal of 5.5 in use and much reference back to legacy versions. Of all the products on which we provide training, companies are slowest to upgrade their web servers
• Linux / Unix
- Web Server
- Java Deployment
Our Linux and Unix systems run a variety of distributions including Red Hat, SuSE, Ubuntu, Solaris and OSX.
- Object Orientation
We use version 5 of PHP for our courses, but with a legacy PHP 4 server available (in practice, PHP 4 code usually runs easily on PHP 5). With PHP, there are server configuration issues which effect how the code runs - you may hear people talk about "register globals", "magic quotes" and "short tags" for example. We configure our servers to be forward-looking in how we set them up, bearing in mind that we'll probably be using PHP 6 before the next brochure is printed and so will many of our clients. And we already talk about PHP 6."""
For 2008, you'll also here talk of - and in some cases see production versions of - Python 3000, Tcl 9, MySQL 6, Java, Ruby .... (written 2007-10-31, updated 2007-11-02)
Associated topics are indexed underP254 - Moving Programs from Perl 4 to Perl 5P256 - Perl 6 Look Ahead 
Perl 6 - significantly nearer, and Rakudo looks very good - (2010-12-02) 
Multiway branches in Perl - the given and when syntax - (2010-09-22) 
Setting a safety net or fallback value in Perl - (2010-06-19) 
Intelligent Matching in Perl - (2010-06-18) 
switch and case, or given and when in Perl - (2010-06-17) 
Moving the product forward - ours, and MySQL, Perl, PHP and Python too - (2010-01-01) 
Perl 6 - When will we have a production release? - (2008-07-26) 
An update on Perl - where is it going? - (2007-06-03) 
Ruby's case - no break - (2006-12-17) 
DWIM and AWWO - (2006-01-30) 
2006 - Making business a pleasure - (2006-01-01) 
A Parallel for Perl 6 - (2004-11-09) 
When will Perl 6 be available - (2004-10-15)S159 - MySQL 5 and PHP 5 
MySQL, MySQLi, PDO or something else - how best to talk to databases from PHP - (2011-09-24) 
PHP4 v PHP5 - Object Model Difference - (2009-05-11) 
Diagrams to show you how - Tomcat, Java, PHP - (2008-08-22) 
Upgrade from PHP 4 to PHP 5 - the TRY issue - (2008-08-15) 
Connecting to MySQL 5 from PHP on Mac OSX Leopard - (2007-12-03) 
MySQL - Password security (authentication protocol) - (2007-04-02) 
MySQL - an FAQ - (2005-12-03) 
MySQL - a score of things to remember - (2005-11-12) 
mysql_connect or mysql_pconnect in PHP? - (2004-10-30)
Some other Articles
Castle Lodge Hotel, Ely, CambridgeshireThe Learning Perl crew, October 2007National Speaker - now to get the talk readyA Golf Club Decision - Perl to JavaWhat software version do we teach?Good, steady, simple example - Perl file handlingBetter technology makes for longer commutes?What we teach - expained for the non-technicalThe little gestures that can really countSparse and Greedy matching - Tcl 8.4