I recently had the opportunity to review a copy of David A. Black?s new book, The Well-Grounded Rubyist. I interviewed David for InfoQ, which is now live on the site. Please take a moment to give the interview a read, I think it was pretty insightful.
David covers many topics including how he got started with Ruby, suggestions on how developers should learn Ruby to his views on moving to Ruby 1.9.1:
I’m afraid that, with all due respect to the core Ruby development team, I’m not a believer in 1.8.7. It’s been described as a stepping-stone to 1.9, and that, together with some of the birth pains of 1.9 as a stable version, has provided a kind of safe haven for people who want some 1.9-era features but are skittish about 1.9. That’s kind of unfortunate.
I’d encourage people very strongly at least to install 1.9.1, and see what problems you come up against. I don’t think that making 1.8 more like 1.9 is the answer. It sends the message that there’s a reason to avoid 1.9 — and while that may have been true before 1.9.1, as far as I can tell it’s now stable and on as solid a footing as any such release before it.
Although the piece is an interview and not a review of the book, I had to hold back my personal views. I think this book is a definite read and should be in every Ruby developer?s library. If you are new to Ruby or experienced, this book holds a lot of great information and is a great reference to how Ruby works, the standard libraries and best-practices. When I review books I normally are sent printed review copies or PDF versions of they exist, I liked this book so much I bought my own copy.
I will likely give a detailed review at another time so look for it here in the future.