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Programming Ruby 1.9: The Pragmatic Programmers' Guide (Facets of Ruby) 3rd Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1934356081
ISBN-10: 1934356085
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Dave Thomas, as one of the authors of the Agile Manifesto, understands agility. As the author of "Programming Ruby," he understands Ruby. And, as an active Rails developer, he knows Rails.



Chad Fowler is co-director of Ruby Central, Inc., and remains an active, driving force in the Ruby community.



Andy Hunt is a programmer turned consultant, author and publisher. He co-authored the best-selling book “The Pragmatic Programmer”, was one of the 17 founders of the Agile Alliance, and co-founded the Pragmatic Bookshelf, publishing award-winning and critically acclaimed books for software developers.

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Product Details

  • Series: Facets of Ruby
  • Paperback: 864 pages
  • Publisher: Pragmatic Bookshelf; 3rd edition (April 28, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1934356085
  • ISBN-13: 978-1934356081
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 1.3 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #628,856 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm coming at this as a Ruby beginner but experienced software developer. The book really got me up and working with Ruby very quickly. It's great for easily finding topics to explain code I'm reading and does a great job of explaining how features work that I'm new to (I'm coming mostly from C++ and am blown away by what Ruby can do!)
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Format: Paperback
Some of the reviews here are accurate in that this book is not a simplified explanation of the Ruby language. When I started looking into this technology for one of our projects I was amazed at how Ruby enthusiasts portrayed both the Ruby Language and Ruby on Rails as easy and straight forward. The truth is there is a lot to know about a programming langauge and a technology that will be used in a real life application, and the Ruby technology is not the exception.

That being said, the authors of this book do a great job explaining the syntax, the constructs, and other aspects of Ruby. The authors make sure to give updated (version 1.9 as of today) notes. There is even a reference section at the end.

The following book might be a bit easier to understand for a beginner: "The Ruby programming language By David Flanagan, Yukihiro Matsumoto". The book has great reviews and it's very thorough. I recommend looking at the contents through the online viewers before purchasing.

For quick, off the ground, training on Ruby I would recommend various tutorials and videos on the Web, in particular the ones on the Ruby and Ruby on Rails Web Sites. YouTube also has some very good tutorials.
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I asked a very close trusted friend for a recommendation on a Ruby book, if I could only have one book which one should I get. His response was "The Pick Axe Book".

He was 100% correct. I already know, Java, C, C++, Python, Erlang, Bash and all the Microsoft languages. This book was perfect, it told me what I needed to know without being too introductory and patronizing and without being overly assumptive that I already knew what they were explaining.

If you can only have one Ruby book, get this one!
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I've been using Rails for a few years, but I never dug deeply into Ruby. This book is one of the best technical books I have read, it keeps you engaged, which is very touch to do with such a dry subject matter. I read cover to cover (except the reference in the back) and I feel very confident in my Ruby skills. I learned something new in every chapter, and have a more grounded understanding of Ruby. I have already used this book as a reference, and I expect to do the same for quite a while.

If you are using Ruby in any way, this book should be in your library.
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Format: Paperback
Michael Feathers once tweeted, "Pair a good Java programmer with a good Ruby programmer and the Java programmer will start programming Ruby in a week", after I read this book, it makes total sense now. I've been programming Java for more than 10 years. I have bought some Ruby on Rails books, but there were some gaps that I needed to fill regarding the Ruby language. This book filled some of the gaps I had, along with examples. For example, I wanted to know how Ruby handles multithreading in its new Ruby 1.9.2 and its previous releases. The book explained with detail exampled. Good work guys!
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This book was purchased for a class in the digital humanities. The book was very helpful when writing programs for the class, but as a beginner, I would have been lost using the book alone! Sometimes it's written in such dense tech-speak that us non-techies in the class needed a translator. By the end of the class, I found this book invaluable and it earned a spot on my "keeper" bookshelf.
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Format: Paperback
I used to work with PHP, C++ and Java, until I found Ruby! This book is a great pass to a bright future for programmers. Since I bought it and started developing Ruby and Rails applications, my developments skills keep getting better and the amount of time I spent coding is getting always smaller. Ruby is great to performe Agile Programming and is really a language to look for!
Highly recommended!
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Format: Paperback
As in previous editions, "Programming Ruby 1.9" covers the Ruby language and standard libraries in thorough detail.

This book is unique in that it contains two distinct sections. The first half of the book is the Ruby tutorial, which explains the hows and whys of the language. The last half is reference material.

The tutorial section is not designed for non-programmers. If you don't have much programming experience, this book will not help you understand the concepts, only how to implement them concisely and elegantly.

The reference section covers the Ruby standard library. Some of the more obscure bits of the standard library are surprisingly hard to find online, so this book is one of the few I actually use as a reference while programming. Flipping to the relevant section is far faster than trying to sift through pages of years-old blogposts for the specific method you need.

The writing is clear and effective, and the examples are well-thought out. Every language book should be like this.
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