Tag Archives | ruby

“Learn code the hard way” is Zed Shaw’s most awesome project to date

Not a whole lot to say about it, but I think that the Learn Code The Hard Way initiative is absolutely awesome; it’s probably Zed Shaw‘s (@zedshaw) best work. I’ve used his Learn Python The Hard Way book (and snippets of Learn C The Hard Way, because sometimes the Old Ways are the Best Ways) as reference but they really excel when used linearly to do what it says on the label.

This series uses example-based tutorials to explain and illustrate concepts and new lessons build upon concepts learned from previous lessons and examples. By the time you’ve gone through one of the books the most fundamental lessons have been iterated over numerous times (but without beating you over the head with them), and that’s how these things stick. But honestly, my favorite things about these books are that they’re priced to move (free & cheap, based on what format you’re looking for) and that they’re open-source (the source code is up on Zed’s Gitorious account) but they’re edited; no wild-ass Wikipedia style misinformation, just people contributing what they know where they think it’ll do some good.

Literary beta testing: Build Awesome Command-Line Applications in Ruby

David Copeland (@davetron5000), author of GLI (Git-like Interface Command Parser) has written a book called Build Awesome Command-Line Applications in Ruby. I’ve been beta-testing the book while it was going through the publishing process, and it is excellent. Of note: it focuses on writing command suites (like the rails command or git) and stand-alone command-line applications (like rsync).

Build Awesome Command-Line Applications in Ruby

So like I mentioned up there, I initially grabbed the book around its second or third beta release, figuring that while it was still in the process of becoming a Real Book I sometimes feel like I’m still in the process of becoming a Real Admin so, you know, what the hell, let’s work through it together.

I know a number of developers who only know Ruby in the context of the Rails framework (and maybe related Rake tasks) and this book is an exceptional guide to using Ruby for more than just Rails applications. Command-line tooling has long been an area of interest for me as working in operations means often having to perform a number of repetitive tasks which lend themselves well to being scripted; good admins write good scripts. More stray observations after the jump →.