I always wanted to learn Ruby. It became so popular over the last couple of years and I hear people praise the language everywhere I go. Well, time has come and I cannot postpone this anymore (not with a clear conscience anyway). So I’m finally learning Ruby. I went quickly over the net and also our campus library today, to see what resources are available for the Ruby newbies.
There is a load of good resources on the internet, so before you run into a bookstore to buy 3000 pages about Ruby, consider starting with the online books and tutorials. You can always buy something on paper later (I personally like stuff the old-fashioned way — on paper more). Here is a list of what I found:
- Programming Ruby by David Thomas and Andy Hunt — That’s right an online version of the Ruby book from the authors of The Pragmatic Programmer
- Ruby Programming WikiBook
- Ruby Learning
That would be some of the online sources for Ruby beginners. And now something on paper:
- The Ruby Way by Hal Fulton — Great, but sort-of-a big-ass book. Just don’t go for the Czech translation, it’s horrifying
- Learning Ruby by Michael Fitzgerald — A little more lightweight, recommend ford bus-size reading!
I personally read The Ruby Way at home and the Learning Ruby when I’m out somewhere. Both of them are good. These are the books that I read (because I could get them in the library). There is a pile of other titles like:
- The Ruby Programming Language
- Ruby Cookbok
- Eloquent Ruby
- Programming Ruby 1.9
- Ruby Best Practices
- Begining Ruby
Just pick your own and you can start learning :-).
Ruby is interpreted language so we will need to install the ruby interpret. On Linux it’s fairly simple, most distributions have ruby packed in their software repositories. On Fedora 15 write
sudo yum install ruby. On Debian-based distros
sudo apt-get install ruby. If you are Windows user, please, do yourself a favor and try Ubuntu!
To check whether the ruby interpret is available go to terminal and type
$ ruby --version
The only thing that’s missing is the famous Hello World :-)! In Ruby the code looks something like this:
#!/usr/bin/env ruby puts "Hello Matz!"
From what I saw during my yesterdays quick tour through Ruby, I can say, that it’s a very interesting language. I’d recommend anyone to give it a shot! I definitely will.
Update: Stay tuned for more! I’m working on a Ruby language cheat sheet right now.