Programming Ruby 1.9 & 2.0 4ed (Anglais) Broché – 26 juillet 2013
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Je recommande fortement de l'avoir pour ceux qui souhaite apprendre Ruby sérieusement.
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Programming Ruby 1.9 & 2.0 reads a lot like O'Reilly's "Definitive Guide" series but is also as usable as a "In a Nutshell" series reference book. I'm very impressed by the way the authors were able to write a detailed but concise (as concise as a huge language like Ruby can be anyway) programming book.
The original Programming Ruby, "the Pickaxe book" is a masterpiece. It conveyed the essence of what made Ruby such an amazing language. It read like a story, using as much detail as necessary to continue the narrative, and no more. It was, in short, very pragmatic. After reading Programming Ruby back when it came out, I felt confident I could do a lot of work in the language, and the rest I could look up. It was a book I could hand to non-programmers and experienced programmers alike.
This edition has lost the narrative and its audience. It reads more like a traditional programming language book organized by feature sets rather than building up an understanding. It makes the mistake of trying to convey too much detail before the reader is ready for it. As an example, there is an extensive diversion in chapter 4 about implementing Enumerators. The reader has just been introduced to the concept of Arrays and Hashes and is not ready for that level of detail. The author does this a lot, going off on detailed technical tangents about new features in Ruby 1.9 and 2.0. Even as an experienced programmer I find myself having difficulty following them sometimes, or understanding why its relevant, a non-programmer would have no hope.
The book will occasionally promote some very powerful, but very questionable, techniques. These techniques often come too early in the book when the reader is supposed to be learning the basics. A reader new to programming would not be able to recognize this is not something to be done in practice. For example, in the section on benchmarking and profiling, the author "optimizes" a program which reads files line by line by slurping the whole file into memory. There is no discussion of why this is a bad idea.
The book regularly assumes the reader is already familiar with programming, and Ruby/Perl like constructs. This greatly changes the nature of the book from a practical introduction to programming in Ruby, to a review of the language for non-Ruby programmers.
If you want to learn Ruby, buy the original edition or read it online. If you want information about the latest Ruby 1.9 and 2.0 features, buy this perhaps for review, or read about them online.
Trust me I tried just learning Rails years ago, now I know Ruby I am very seldom defeated. If you like this comment get the book GREAT resource.
I had a much easier time reading a higher level programming book called "Eloquent Ruby" as he described why Ruby coders do things the way they do it and he said it wasn't for beginners. There were a lot of "Aha" moments when I read that. With "Programming Ruby 1.0 & 2.0", I'm like "WTF are you trying to say?" I was hoping for a beginner book to make sure I rounded out the basics of the language by getting this book. Fail!
Ruby is different and has a clearly unique style for programming. However, without hitting the basics of the reasons to use a 'puts' statement over a 'p' statement over a 'printf' statement leaves the reader confused. I have given him 3 stars because I'm hopeful that this book has the information I'm looking for. The end has a lot of the built in methods Ruby uses, which will definitely be a plus. I just hope the examples are more clear in the future chapters and that I get something useful out of it rather than having a list of all of the built in methods.
Here's the point: When you first introduce a piece of code, walk line by line through what it is doing. Gradually back off with later examples and skipping the things the reader has already seen. Continue this, highlighting the new portions in bold, so the reader focuses on the stuff they should be learning in that section. There are only about a million other books that do it this way to use as examples.