Sorta new to Rails, and looking for learning resources


#1

First some background. I’m a decent intermediate (I think) programmer
and have experience with other languages like PHP, ActionScript, and
JavaScript. I just finished watching all the lynda.com videos for
Ruby on Rails and I’ve learned a lot. Now I’m looking for more.

While I was watching those videos, I was often thinking about how
certain things work. Things like how Rails knows a certain thing such
as tables in a database exist. You know all the awesome stuff that
makes Rails so much easier than other languages for the same purpose.
Maybe because of this, I don’t fully feel like I could build a Rails
app on my own yet. In other words I might not know what I have to
create and what Rails can do for me.

So I’m looking for books. I was looking at Ruby for Rails, since it
claims to explain all the underlying stuff of Rails. But I was also
looking at the other two real popular books, Agile Web D.
with Rails, and Rails Recipes. Will these two books (or the first one
mostly) be able to help me out without also having to buy Ruby for
Rails?

I think I also need help with the online documentation for
Rails(Rails: Complete API, Ruby Core, and Ruby Standard Lib). I don’t
find it extremely easy to find what I want. Some things such as the
symbols aren’t listed in the long lists, and the lack of a search
function doesn’t help. What’s the difference between the 3
documentations? Any hints on how to use them?

Or any tips about anything else in general?
Thanks.


#2

Quoting nemesis256 removed_email_address@domain.invalid, who spaketh thusly:

So I’m looking for books. I was looking at Ruby for Rails, since it
claims to explain all the underlying stuff of Rails. But I was also
looking at the other two real popular books, Agile Web D.
with Rails, and Rails Recipes. Will these two books (or the first one
mostly) be able to help me out without also having to buy Ruby for
Rails?

I’m quickly growing fond of the Pragmatic Programmer series, those two
books are a good start. I didn’t get the Ruby for Rails book so I
can’t comment on it.

Or any tips about anything else in general?

I learn by doing, and very little by watching. So for me the best
approach was to jump right on in and start blowing stuff up. :slight_smile:

– Mitch


#3

On Jul 17, 2:51 pm, Mitch P. removed_email_address@domain.invalid wrote:

I’m quickly growing fond of the Pragmatic Programmer series, those two
books are a good start. I didn’t get the Ruby for Rails book so I
can’t comment on it.

Or any tips about anything else in general?

I learn by doing, and very little by watching. So for me the best
approach was to jump right on in and start blowing stuff up. :slight_smile:

– Mitch

if you look on Amazon, there are (or will be this summer) a staggering
volume of books on rails coming out. There’s a bunch i consider
outstanding:

Pickax,
AWDR2,
Ajax on Rails (Raymond)
“Rails for java Develoers” and “Pragmatic Ajax” Gehtland et al.
Ruby for Rails (Black)
Rails Cookbook
Textmate (Gray)

The Apress books are quite good as well. That’s off the top of my
head, I know i’ve overlooked some, but that should keep you busy for a
couple days.


#4

Books: (in order of value)
Refactoring by Martin F. (not ruby specific but damn
valuable)
Agile Development by the pragmatic programmers
Programming Ruby by the pragmatic programmers
Rails up and running by O’rilley media (covers Ajax, Migrations,
Testing not in .
Agile Development)
Ajax on Rails
The Ruby Way (A how to rather than reference)

The API:
The three sections of the api from top down are:
- files
- classes/modules
- public/protected methods

You should be able to find most things in the api just by using CTR+f
if fire fox and step through the menu. If that doesn’t get you what
you want the other options are the online manual

  • http://railsmanual.com/ which does have a search (not a great search
    mind).
    and the code itself which if you know were to look can give you a
    masterful perspective on how to do what you want

Lastly: Believe Mitch, the guy is right; if you have the potential
jumping in head first is the best way. it doesn’t matter if you feel
confident to build an acuall app yet just try and when you fail learn
from it and use that refactoring book it is the best book on good
codeing (any lang) I’ve found.

Keynan


#5

On Jul 17, 4:31 pm, nemesis256 removed_email_address@domain.invalid wrote:

While I was watching those videos, I was often thinking about how
certain things work. Things like how Rails knows a certain thing such
as tables in a database exist. You know all the awesome stuff that
makes Rails so much easier than other languages for the same purpose.
Maybe because of this, I don’t fully feel like I could build a Rails
app on my own yet. In other words I might not know what I have to
create and what Rails can do for me.

Please consider the Essential Rails class coming up in September - we
gear it for Java/PHP/.NET devs who are switching to Rails and are
asking your exact question: www.essentialrails.com.

So I’m looking for books. I was looking at Ruby for Rails, since it
claims to explain all the underlying stuff of Rails. But I was also
looking at the other two real popular books, Agile Web D.
with Rails, and Rails Recipes. Will these two books (or the first one
mostly) be able to help me out without also having to buy Ruby for
Rails?

Agile Web D. with Rails, 2nd Ed. is great; also Ruby for
Rails is arguably better for learning Ruby as much as the Rails
framework.

I think I also need help with the online documentation for
Rails(Rails: Complete API, Ruby Core, and Ruby Standard Lib). I don’t
find it extremely easy to find what I want. Some things such as the
symbols aren’t listed in the long lists, and the lack of a search
function doesn’t help. What’s the difference between the 3
documentations? Any hints on how to use them?

Rails API is a reference to the Rails classes and methods; won’t make
too much sense until you get an idea of what the framework is all
about. The Ruby Core and Standard Lib docs are for the Ruby language
itself; some classes are “core” while others are separated into a
library, but every distribution of Ruby comes with the standard
library. I often wish there was a unified doc somewhere (I bet there
is, I’ve been too lazy to look, I just bookmark both of them).

Or any tips about anything else in general?

I’ve found that learning Ruby well is really what separates the Rails
“users” from the Rails “developers”, if you know what I mean. So try
to spend time writing some Ruby scripts and running them from the
command line. And definitely learn “irb”, the interactive Ruby prompt

  • it’s a great way to learn Ruby.

Feel free to ask more questions here or on our blog,
softiesonrails.com. If you have questions about the class drop a
comment on our blog or email me directly.

Hope this helps!

Jeff
essentialrails.com


#6

nemesis256 wrote:

Thanks for all the welcoming messages. This seems to be a great place
for info on Rails. I think I’m going to buy the Ruby for Rails book.
The thing about answering questions as to how things work, and a
section about only Ruby to learn irb like Jeff mentioned are
attracting me to this book.

Theres always Why’s guide if you havn’t read it already.


#7

I like “Build your own Ruby On Rails Web Applications” by Patrrick Lenz.
It’s a good beginners book. I have been programming in RoR now for about
two months I find that it’s hard to find that one book that ties
everything together properly. Being a C++ and Java programmer, I find
the style very different then what my brain is used too. I have yet to
find, however, a good reference and self teach book for the Ruby
programming language.


#8

Thanks for all the welcoming messages. This seems to be a great place
for info on Rails. I think I’m going to buy the Ruby for Rails book.
The thing about answering questions as to how things work, and a
section about only Ruby to learn irb like Jeff mentioned are
attracting me to this book.


#9

One other resource you should seriously look at is Peepcode
screencasts (www.peepcode.com) they provide some great info, example
and source code and if you get a multi -episode pack its a pretty good
deal. He just released some new '‘Rails from scratch’ episodes that
might be right up your alley. Another good resource is railscasts.com
which is the same idea as peepcode but deals with smaller concepts and
is free.


#10

gem install rails --include-dependencies

will give you the RoR rdoc in html


#11

I’ve just started programming in RoR but spend most of my time on a
ship with no internet connection. What’s the best source for a full
download RoR docs in pdf or other convenient format?

Thanks in advance.
Gavin

On Jul 18, 6:57 am, Keynan P. removed_email_address@domain.invalid