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Ruby for Rails: Ruby Techniques for Rails Developers Paperback – 11 May 2006


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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Manning Publications; 1 edition (11 May 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1932394699
  • ISBN-13: 978-1932394696
  • Product Dimensions: 18.8 x 3.1 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 267,820 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

A Ruby community leader, David A. Black is a director of Ruby Central, the parent organization of the annual International Ruby Conference (RubyConf) and the International Rails Conference. David is a Ruby core contributor and the creator and maintainer of the Rails-based Ruby Change Request Archive (RCRchive). He lives and works as a consultant in New Jersey.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By DAZ VINE VOICE on 31 Aug 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is excellent. It helps to teach not only rails but the ruby language that underpins it. Rather than treating them as two separate topics, the book focuses on showing how ruby and rails work together (rails is written in ruby after all...) This helps you to learn the ruby language with a focus on rails development.

It is written in a tutorial format and David Black has a very authorative writing style that is a little dry (i.e. doesn't have any of those silly 'jokes' that many tech authors use).

It starts with the basics of installing ruby and rails and walks you through a small rails application before going into the nuts and bolts of the ruby language. Most of the ruby parts are centered around rails with lots of references to how rails works in the background. This helps to give you a good grounding in Ruby but also helps you to understand rails in depth.

Be aware that it is not a reference book and you would probably be better with Agile Web Development With Rails by the two Davids for Rails reference and The Ruby Pickaxe book by the one David for Ruby reference. Learn to Program by Chris Pine is also worth reading if you have little programming experience and would like to learn Ruby from the start.

I would highly recommend this book to anybody who is starting to develop in rails.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Terry on 1 Feb 2007
Format: Paperback
I'm an experienced Perl and Python programmer and this is the first book on Ruby + Rails that I've picked up. I have to say that I found part 1 of the book (the first 90 of 475 pages) excellent, demonstrating clearly the amount of coding that is avoided by using the Rails framework.

But from then on until part 4 (near to the end) it felt like wading through increasingly thickening treacle with the book making very slow yet unthorough progress through the more common general purpose programming features with frequently repeated bad examples and a awful lot of superfluous "chit-chat"; I can only assume that the author had a hard time fleshing out the main contents to meet the required page count! Here's one of many possible examples from the text that illustrates the point:

"From now on, when you see this notation (in this book or elsewhere), you'll know what it means. (The second example (class method reference using a dot) looks the same as a call to the method, but you'll know from the context whether it's a method call or a reference to a method in a discussion.) // Objects come from classes. If classes are objects, that implies that they, too, come from a class. A class can be created with a call to the class method new of its class. // And what is the class of a class? It's a class called Class. Yes, there's a bit of "Who's on first?" here, but the concept is by no means impenetrable..."

Thankfully, the Rails focused contents toward the end of the book goes a long way towards redeeming the dire middle, and make for quite stimulating reading.

As a Ruby tutorial it is poor. As a Ruby or Rails reference it is also quite poor. But as a Rails tutorial it shines.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A. K. C. Green on 26 May 2006
Format: Paperback
As a Rails newbie I've been purchasing a number of Ruby and Rails books/pdfs and this is one of the best.

Dave is a longstanding member of the Ruby community and I think his passion for the language may explain why this is such an excellent read.

He has managed to produce a technical manual that explains both what Rails is and how to use it, and Ruby's idioms and how they work in a Rails context, that is a joy to read. The book's contents prove to be both very informative and easy to grasp. A definite must have.
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Format: Paperback
Approaching this book, I wasn't quite sure where the emphasis lay, and who this was aimed at. To be clear then, I recommend this book to an intermediate Ruby programmer, who is interested in using examples from Rails to help cement their learning. It would also probably help to have the vaguest idea of what Rails is, and the sorts of web apps it's useful for. If you're an existing Rails developer, this is a great way to get a better understanding of what's going on, but it's not a tutorial on Rails for a complete newbie, nor does it provide advanced Rails practices.

Unlike many programming books, which focus on procedural programming before building up to classes, RfR is admirably object oriented in focus from the word go. It's quite impressive that conditionals aren't introduced until about 200 pages in. Also notable is the chapter on metaprogramming, which is very good. If you felt a bit short-changed by the coverage of this subject in The Pickaxe, this is much better.

Material on Rails top and tail the book: the first part introduces Rails by building a simple web app, and the final chapters rejig it with enhanced models, views and controllers, based on the Ruby material in the middle.

In short, this is more of a Ruby book than a Rails book, and I was very happy with that. This is well worth getting even if you have no interest in web apps.
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