An introduction, in about 50 lines of Ruby

Hi, I’m Lex. I’ve been Rubying for a few months now and can’t get
enough.

I’m new to the list, so I’ll tell a little bit about myself. I’m 23
years old and a high school dropout. I’m a self-taught programmer
starting from the age of 10. I’ve learned 13 languages (not including
markup languages) and my favorites (depending on the task) are Ruby,
Scheme, JavaScript, Java, C, and assembly. I work as an enterprise Java
developer and love it, but I have aspirations to work with AI and game
development.

I’m a bit of a braggart and apologize for it. My arrogant tendencies
recently led me to writing the attached program. I believe it is a
suitable greeting for this list.

I recently made the mistake of comparing a Ruby “hello world” program to
a Java “hello world” program while at work and it began an office war of
the shortest hello world in various languages (from clipper to klingon).

Well after the artillery died down, I decided to flip the coin and write
a long “Hello World”. It’s just obfuscated enough to not contain “hello
world” anywhere in it, but should still be pretty easy to follow. My
hope was that it would inspire my office mates to have to learn a little
Ruby just to figure out how it worked, while demonstrating some of the
neat features Ruby has to offer.

Thanks to everybody for a great list and a great language.

You guys are no fun. I didn’t even get “that’s not really recursive,
it’s building an external variable.”, much less a “Hello, welcome to the
group.”

Maybe I should go learn Python…

Alexei B. wrote:

Hi, I’m Lex. I’ve been Rubying for a few months now and can’t get
enough.

I’m new to the list, so I’ll tell a little bit about myself. I’m 23
years old and a high school dropout. I’m a self-taught programmer
starting from the age of 10. I’ve learned 13 languages (not including
markup languages) and my favorites (depending on the task) are Ruby,
Scheme, JavaScript, Java, C, and assembly. I work as an enterprise Java
developer and love it, but I have aspirations to work with AI and game
development.

I’m a bit of a braggart and apologize for it. My arrogant tendencies
recently led me to writing the attached program. I believe it is a
suitable greeting for this list.

I recently made the mistake of comparing a Ruby “hello world” program to
a Java “hello world” program while at work and it began an office war of
the shortest hello world in various languages (from clipper to klingon).

Well after the artillery died down, I decided to flip the coin and write
a long “Hello World”. It’s just obfuscated enough to not contain “hello
world” anywhere in it, but should still be pretty easy to follow. My
hope was that it would inspire my office mates to have to learn a little
Ruby just to figure out how it worked, while demonstrating some of the
neat features Ruby has to offer.

Thanks to everybody for a great list and a great language.

Hi,

In message “Re: An introduction, in about 50 lines of Ruby.”
on Fri, 8 Aug 2008 23:14:01 +0900, Alexei B. [email protected]
writes:

|You guys are no fun. I didn’t even get “that’s not really recursive,
|it’s building an external variable.”, much less a “Hello, welcome to the
|group.”

“Hello, welcome to the group.” :wink:

|Maybe I should go learn Python…

Maybe you should. Then you can choose a language you prefer.

          matz.

I’m very sorry, Lex. You’ve come to the Ruby mailing list at a difficult
time;
new users are using their summer hours to try out Ruby for the first
time and
the power users are off on beaches enjoying their time away from work.

I feel like I check the mailing list fairly regularly, but unfortunately
I
missed your post on the day you posted it. I’m sure many others who
would
normally have been interested by your post were in similar situations.
Unfortunately the board has been seeing increasing amounts of spam sneak
in
recently, and us board regulars have been forced to skim the titles and
make
judgment calls as to what to spend our time reading.

While I am in no way an icon of the Ruby community, allow me to
personally
welcome you. This is a wonderful place filled with wonderful people, and
I would
hate for a sour introduction like this to affect your opinions on us as
a group.

I did take your time to read your post and the attached code – nice
work! I
like how you brought recursion into it. I hope your co-workers were
interested
and not put off, but it seems from the situation alone that they’re
open-minded
people.

I hope you continue to code in Ruby and make your presence on this list
stronger. We can always use some more bright minds that are contributing
to the
community instead of asking us to do Google searches for them.

-Dana

P.S. Try Python if you want to or haven’t. It’s a great language. Most
everyone
here has dipped their toes in both languages, and if you’re a true
Rubyist, I
trust we’ll be seeing more from you here.

On Aug 8, 10:27 am, Yukihiro M. [email protected] wrote:

|Maybe I should go learn Python…

Maybe you should. Then you can choose a language you prefer.

                                                    matz.

Maybe it’s time for a list split?

I have noticed that there has been a fairly sharp decline in list
participation over the last couple of years. In August of 2006 there
were over 6500 posts, since then we have seen a steady decline to the
low 3000s. From what I can tell, the main issue is that Ruby experts
tire of the quantity of nuby posts that they have to weed through.

I know there is the fear that having two lists of “beginner” vs.
“expert” creates the fear that experts won’t help out beginner, but
that it already the case --as demonstrated by this post. There are the
nice guys like David Black who take the time to answer new user’s
posts often, but he will do this if there are one or two lists :wink: In
fact, I think it would be easier for experts to help new users if they
could more readily segregate the post types.

So I’ll go out on a limb here, I respectfully request that an official
“ruby-pro” (or some such name) be created.

T.

On Aug 8, 2008, at 10:13 AM, Trans wrote:

So I’ll go out on a limb here, I respectfully request that an official
“ruby-pro” (or some such name) be created.

Will you be deciding who is a pro? Will you be preventing new users
from joining?

James Edward G. II

Peter H. wrote:

Just what was the OPs (programming) problem?

He didn’t have a problem. He wrote a cool program and wanted to show it
to us.

I don’t know why, but I read his post differently. I feel like hes just
a guy
who wants to get his foot in the door of the Ruby community but doesn’t
know
enough about how we work to do it correctly. We don’t post
introductions, we
post answers, and that is how reputation is formed.

I don’t think it’s fair to call the poor guy a troll. He clearly looks
up to us
and just wanted to impress us. Aren’t we all a little egotistical? We
ARE
programmers, after all.

-Dana

Trans wrote:

that it already the case --as demonstrated by this post.
Quite frankly I don’t know what we were supposed to do to help this guy.
He may be a beginner but he was just posting his ego. I didn’t post for
the simple reason: “don’t feed the troll”.

There is certainly a decline in the quality of the beginners post, they
are sometimes coming down to the subject line being the whole post and
other bitching about how no one is helping them. I am reminded of Zed’s
comments and something DDH said. “We own you nothing” (to paraphrase).
Some of the beginners don’t make the effort to ask for help, it is
almost as if they are throwing their cloths in the laundry basket and
expecting their mom to magically clean and fix them.

Just what was the OPs (programming) problem?

Peter H. wrote:

There is certainly a decline in the quality of the beginners post, they
are sometimes coming down to the subject line being the whole post and
other bitching about how no one is helping them. I am reminded of Zed’s
comments and something DDH said. “We own you nothing” (to paraphrase).
Some of the beginners don’t make the effort to ask for help, it is
almost as if they are throwing their cloths in the laundry basket and
expecting their mom to magically clean and fix them.

Outstanding point. This goes along nicely with
http://www.catb.org/~esr/faqs/smart-questions.html from another thread.
We want to help because we are helpful and nice people, sometimes to our
misfortune. We do take time to read and answer when we can but it is
not the obligation that some reactions indicate is perceived.

I have gotten wonderful help here on some things and not others. That
is fine. Sometimes you just need to muddle through. I know that there
are posts that I automatically decline to help. When someone posts with
a ‘this is more than I want to figure out so I won’t even try. Here, do
it FOR me.’ are discarded forthwith. People that ask intelligent
questions that say that they tried and are running into walls and just
want to get past those, them I like going the extra mile for when I can.

All that to say, we might do some weeding. James G. asked an
excellent question:

Trans wrote:

So I’ll go out on a limb here, I respectfully request that an official
“ruby-pro” (or some such name) be created.

James G. wrote:

Will you be deciding who is a pro? Will you be preventing new users
from joining?

Well, I suggest that we try letting people decide for themselves which
they are. I have seen many posts where the subject line outright says
that it is a noob question, so they know. I think that it would have
the side benefit of letting those that are a little less of a noob to
help the total noobs. That would let people look and help where they
want to with a pre-filtered list.

fwiw&imho

On Aug 8, 11:50 am, Dana M. [email protected] wrote:
Aren’t we all a little egotistical? We ARE programmers, after all.

Nice :slight_smile:

T.

On Aug 8, 11:31 am, James G. [email protected] wrote:

On Aug 8, 2008, at 10:13 AM, Trans wrote:

So I’ll go out on a limb here, I respectfully request that an official
“ruby-pro” (or some such name) be created.

Will you be deciding who is a pro? Will you be preventing new users
from joining?

Of course not. No one decides who can join ruby-core either. People
naturally segregate themselves according to the environment most
suitable to them. It’s not something that generally needs any kind of
strong-handed enforcement. Moreover, it’s not so much about being a
beginner or expert, but whether the thread at hand is beginner or
expert. Even experts occasionally need reminders on basic stuff, etc.

Anyway, I’m not saying it’s a perfect idea. The worlds not perfect
place! I’m just looking at some symptoms and suggesting a possible
remedy.

T.

IMHO, I believe that posting has declined over the last couple of years
due to ruby maturing as a language. It has now become a friendly,
familliar, and reliable tool instead of the rough, cutting edge one it
used to be.

i.e. After writing a 1000 blocks, I still think they are the coolest
thing since sliced bread but they don’t keep me up at night like they
used to… :slight_smile:

ilan

Trans wrote:

So I’ll go out on a limb here, I respectfully request that an official
“ruby-pro” (or some such name) be created.

The Thoughtful Ruby mailing list has roughly zero traffic, so I’m
skeptical a new list would be helpful.

Maybe people heard about Rails, tried it for a while, and decided either
to just hang on the rails lists, or switch (back) to Java or PHP or
something.

Or, more likely, people have formed multiple Ruby communities, and each
has found their own way (blogs, twitter, other lists, irc) to keep in
touch.


James B.

www.happycamperstudios.com - Wicked Cool Coding
www.jamesbritt.com - Playing with Better Toys
www.ruby-doc.org - Ruby Help & Documentation
www.rubystuff.com - The Ruby Store for Ruby Stuff

It has now become a friendly, familliar, and reliable tool instead of the
rough, cutting edge one it used to be.

I am not sure to what you refer but in my experience the ruby community
was rather friendly even ~4 years ago.

The only difference I seem to have noticed is that there are now a lot
more people using ruby compared to ~4 years ago, and I also mean non-RoR
using ruby guys.

On Fri, Aug 8, 2008 at 8:13 AM, Trans [email protected] wrote:

So I’ll go out on a limb here, I respectfully request that an official
“ruby-pro” (or some such name) be created.

If the list does split, surely ruby-beginners is the new list that
should be created? ruby-pro carries too much baggage with it - there’s
the impression (warranted or not) of elitism, and the pressure to
maintain the perceived “pro” level of posting is almost guaranteed to
deaden the list.

martin

On Aug 9, 2008, at 9:01 AM, Trans wrote:

I thought about that. My concern with creating a beginners list is
that beginners will be more likely to gravitate toward the most well
known list, ie.

Perl has a beginners list. I was on it for years and really enjoyed
it. It’s very successful.

James Edward G. II

On Aug 9, 3:29 am, “Martin DeMello” [email protected] wrote:

On Fri, Aug 8, 2008 at 8:13 AM, Trans [email protected] wrote:

So I’ll go out on a limb here, I respectfully request that an official
“ruby-pro” (or some such name) be created.

If the list does split, surely ruby-beginners is the new list that
should be created? ruby-pro carries too much baggage with it - there’s
the impression (warranted or not) of elitism, and the pressure to
maintain the perceived “pro” level of posting is almost guaranteed to
deaden the list.

I thought about that. My concern with creating a beginners list is
that beginners will be more likely to gravitate toward the most well
known list, ie. ruby-talk. I could possibly see a ruby-help list, but
that would take a much more concerted effort by the community to rev-
up and maintain, and I’m not sure it conveys the type of sectioning
that’s really needed to improve list participation.

Yes, having an advanced list is sort of elitist, that’s the point. But
that doesn’t make it defacto bad. A better name might help that
perception however, say ruby-tech.

T.

On Sat, 2008-08-09 at 23:01 +0900, Trans wrote:

I thought about that. My concern with creating a beginners list is
that beginners will be more likely to gravitate toward the most well
known list, ie. ruby-talk. I could possibly see a ruby-help list, but
that would take a much more concerted effort by the community to rev-
up and maintain, and I’m not sure it conveys the type of sectioning
that’s really needed to improve list participation.

Yes, having an advanced list is sort of elitist, that’s the point. But
that doesn’t make it defacto bad. A better name might help that
perception however, say ruby-tech.

Well … first of all, anybody is free to go to Google G. and create
and market any kind of list they want to, within certain terms of
service, of course. So if, for example, someone feels that there needs
to be a “ruby-beginners” or a “ruby-help” or a “ruby-professional”, they
can just go ahead and start it up and invite participants.

Second, this list is essentially mirrored between the “ruby-talk”
mailing list, the Usenet comp.lang.ruby newsgroup and a Google Group. If
you split one, you more or less have to split all three of them. It
doesn’t seem to me to be worth the effort when anyone can do what I
described above.

So … those of you who feel strongly about establishing new lists, go
ahead and establish them, post the URLs here, and see who joins. :slight_smile: I
can pretty much guarantee that I won’t join one, since I’m on half a
dozen or so specialized Ruby lists, like ruby-core, rubinius-dev,
ruby-benchmark-suite and the Seattle and Portland Ruby brigade lists.
Chances of me missing an opportunity to learn or teach in this area are
rather small, I think. :wink:

M. Edward (Ed) Borasky
ruby-perspectives.blogspot.com

“A mathematician is a machine for turning coffee into theorems.” –
Alfréd Rényi via Paul Erdős

2008/8/9 Trans [email protected]:

the impression (warranted or not) of elitism, and the pressure to
Yes, having an advanced list is sort of elitist, that’s the point. But
that doesn’t make it defacto bad. A better name might help that
perception however, say ruby-tech.

T.

How many “(un)official” ruby lists are there out there?

On Sat, Aug 9, 2008 at 7:21 AM, James G. [email protected]
wrote:

On Aug 9, 2008, at 9:01 AM, Trans wrote:

I thought about that. My concern with creating a beginners list is
that beginners will be more likely to gravitate toward the most well
known list, ie.

Perl has a beginners list. I was on it for years and really enjoyed it.
It’s very successful.

OCaml likewise.

martin

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