Tuesday, February 1, 2011

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Code

Ok so here's what's up. I was at a housewarming party helping some old friends warm up their brand new house this past Saturday. My friend Eli (also known in some circles as jqr) gave me the same pitch he gives me every 4 or 5 months which is basically:

"Get off your ass and learn Ruby."

So that's what I'm doing. I don't consider myself a programmer or a coder by any stretch of the imagination, but I've been thinking about learning Ruby off and on for about 4 years now. So here we are. I've spent some times with Beginning Ruby (I'm about midway through Chapter 3 now) and some time with Hackety Hack (nice, simple, easy to understand, perhaps a bit limited) and I've gone through Ruby In 20 Minutes (which is another good supplemental thing, and showed me how to produce a finished program, but I'm still feeling a bit lost)

So far I'm enjoying what I'm doing and my biggest problems are remembering the correct order of the syntax (a common problem for any beginner) and understanding just HOW these things I'm learning to do (strings, arrays, etc) fit together to make a program. I'm probably getting ahead of myself, but it's like learning how to make a nut or a bolt that will eventually go into making a car but not having any idea how the car gets put together.

Still, what I'm reminding myself is just to do a little each day, and build on what I've learned and I'll have some EUREKA! moments. I've learned complicated things before and this is how it always works. The key is not to get overwhelmed with the material and to take it slow and begin with the basics.

puts "Ruby is awesome!"

Now run and tell THAT.

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