+<item id="assigning_list_to_scalar" h="Assigining a List to a Scalar Variable">
+Normally, assigning from a function or an expression that returns a list
+to a scalar variable, will not yield what you want:
+my $characters = split(//, $string);
+This will cause the list as returned by split to be evaluated in scalar
+context, and to return a single (and not very meaningful) scalar item.
+You normally want one of those:
+my @characters = split(//, $string);
+my $chars_aref = [ split(//, $string) ];
+my $num_chars = () = split(//, $string); \# Use length instead in this case.
+A lot of the confusion stems from the fact that people expect arrays in Perl
+to be contained directly in scalars. For more information about that,
+consult <a href="$(ROOT)/topics/references/">our page about references</a>.