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Simply Rails 2.0 2nd Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0980455205
ISBN-10: 0980455200
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 450 pages
  • Publisher: SitePoint; 2 edition (May 17, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0980455200
  • ISBN-13: 978-0980455205
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,065,026 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Amongst the plethora of Rails books, only a few cover 2.0+, and even fewer do a decent job of it. This book covers Rails 2.0.2 incrementally from the ground up, and there's even a decent intro to Ruby for those completely new to the language.

Patrick Lenz thoroughly covers the basics, RESTful routing, plugins, testing, etc., and also teaches several tips, tricks, and shortcuts of the trade...things that you may not easily deduce by reading the API. Practically every concept covered is matched with hands-on exercises while developing the book's application. The code is accurate and virtually errata-free.

There were only a couple of times that I had a question. I emailed Patrick, he responded literally within minutes, and was very helpful!

I have read several Rails books. Yet this is only the second book I've read that truly practices what it preaches about testing (and the other was Patrick's first version for Rails 1.2.x: Build Your Own Ruby on Rails Web Applications).

If you want to learn Rails, or already know Rails pre-2.0 and want to get up to speed on the new features and functionality of Rails 2.0+, or finally commit to proper testing, buy this book and take the time to work through and understand every exercise. I think you will be very glad you did.
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Format: Paperback
THis is one of hte best beginner web app books i have ever seen (I've read books on rails, PHP , django, Zope, but not too much on .NET, ASP or java). The author takes the approach that he will introduce one coherent topic at a time thoroughly, with as little source code as possible, without digressions, exceptions or comparisons to other languages (perl, PHP, java). This he does admirably.

If i had to comment on the books limitations, i would say that there are a lot of topics that are glossed over: CSS, regular expressions, security. e.g. page 175, "regexs are confusing". I would've said that regex's are important in rails: validations, generating URL slugs, etc, and there are a lot of good resources, and also verbose mode to make them more readable. The book is pretty well indexed but "regular expressions" doesn't appear in index. p 329, you're shown how to take user input and display back in view *without* sanitizing. This is absolutely something you do not want to show in a beginner rails book. There's no mention of XSS, SQL injection, other security issues in the book, as far as i can tell. Something analogous is on p 258, where plain text passwords are stored to database, along with text that says this is not a great practice. The text should say "If you try to put this code into production, you'll probably be fired".

When you finish reading this carefully, you still won't know enough to look up issues in teh Rails Way book, which is where a aspiring Rails developer needs to be to find work. The book doesn't provide the next steps, e.g. never mentions the most often used rails plugins, ImageMagick, acts as solr/ferret, restful_auth, etc, doesn't mention any browser issues or DBMS issues.
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Format: Paperback
This book is excellent, if you know nothing of Ruby on Rails, and know very little of other programming languages.

It is a book to introduce you to Rails (and Ruby) without going into too much of the technical aspects.

This will in no way make you proficient at developing Rails applications, however, it introduces you to the fundamentals (especially testing) of rails with which you can go and watch screen screencasts, follow tutorials or read other books on rails with a basic understanding of the process.

I do NOT recommend this book to anyone trying to further along their Rails training (nor is it intended for that).

I DO recommend this for anyone who has picked up a rails book or watched a screencast and blindly started to regurgitate the code that is being taught without understanding what it is supposed to do. This book will explain it.

A (free) tutorial with which I recommend in conjunction with this book is:
[..]
This tutorial goes into gory detail over (nearly) every basic step that you need to know to start your Rails apps.

I have read nearly 10 books , plus countless screencasts and tutorials (mostly outdated due to Rails 2.0) on Rails and Simply Rails 2 is by far the most up-to-date and easy to read for a true beginner.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is a great start, but you won't be able to write applications in Ruby on Rails by the end of it.

Let me refine that: you will be able to write one Ruby on Rails application by the end of it. The book walks you through creating a program that works like Digg. The book explains well everything that you need to do to write this one program, and introduces you to the basics of RoR architecture and how RoR works. I followed the instructions and understood everything that was going on.

However, once you have finished this book and written your Digg-like program, there is no guidance for where to go next. There isn't a chapter on "Further Resources" or "Where to go from here" or anything at all - you're just stuck with your little Digg-imitation. Not only that, but the book tends to introduce information in a rather haphazard order. From a pedagogy standpoint, the order in which information is presented makes a lot of sense. But it makes the book useless as a reference manual, or even as a model for how to do your own project.

It's fine as a first step and as an introduction to Ruby on Rails, especially since at the moment it's the only thing in print about Rails 2.x. But you will have to read other books before you can be a competent RoR programmer.
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