I'm a little confused and wondered if any AO'ers could clarify this issue for me. I've found a few references via google search but either they aren't what I'm looking for or I simply don't understand that they are what i'm looking for. And section 2.3.4 of the llama book isn't very clear on the matter.

my question is simple: In Perl, can I convert a single letter to it's alphabetic numeric equivalent? Meaning, 'a' would equal '1' and so forth.

a sample prog that illustrates this idea would be:

print "Give me a letter: ";
$letter = <>;
print "Give me a number: ";
$num = <>;
print $letter + $number;

So, if i gave 'a' as the letter and 1 as the number, the prog would print '2' as the answer.

Any thoughts or hints? Or am I reaching and it would be better to build a database table or hash that contained the letter-number mappings?

Thanks in advance.