Thursday, March 31, 2011

Generating code and staying motivated

I've discovered the less I think about what I'm doing with Ruby and Rails the more I learn and the more fun I have. I don't mean I'm not thinking about the code I'm writing, but rather if I stop and allow myself to feel overwhelmed and frustrated by what I don't know how to do yet, I get discouraged and coding seems like a chore.

I went back to Beginning Ruby tonight and did some work with gems that generate html and search through html for specific tags and/or information. Markaby, Redcloth and Hpricot, take a bow!

Right now I'm seeing actual Ruby work as being kind of secondary, though. I've decided I need a project to work on, so this weekend I'm going to begin work on a site that allows users to store characters for a Dungeons and Dragons campaign. It's a known fact I'm a huge DnD nerd and I've used similar sites in the past, so I think this is a good project for me. I know a lot about the mechanics of DnD and what I expect from a site that stores characters, and I've learned enough Rails that I think I can figure out how to get things started.

This big picture stuff was a huge mystery to me even a month ago, and I really need to keep that in mind. I still don't know exactly how to do it, but I have a good idea and I know where to find information, so I'm on the right track.


  1. Hey Tyler. The best way to learn Rails (or Python, or whatever) is to build something REAL. Good luck with your D&D app. I tweeted this btw :)!/mreider/status/53604965398216704

  2. @Mateo Yeah, that's the same conclusion I've come to. Thanks for the advice! It's always great to hear from more experienced developers.