Yesterday, I got Amazon’s shipment of Agile Web Development with Rails: A Pragmatic Guide, and I stepped through the installation of Ruby and Rails and did the first “Hello, world!”-type tutorial. Rails looks really amazing (there’s even a tutorial online that shows a simple blog engine being built in 15 minutes, and with only 58 lines of code).
I feel like I need to get a better handle on the Ruby language first, though (since the Rails book assumes you have Ruby experience), so while stuff at work has been crashing and rebooting all day, I’ve been taking advantage of the downtime and slowly working through Chris Pine’s great Ruby tutorial. It’s a hell of a lot easier than Cocoa, and I feel like I’m getting the hang of it. Of course part of that is having some of the basics hammered in from so many Cocoa tutorials I’ve tried, since I’ve noticed some parts here and there where I’d be lost if I didn’t know some of these concepts beforehand, but I’m sure that the expanded book version takes care of all that. I have to say, Ruby is very newbie-friendly. There’s a lot less overhead jibba-jabba that you have to figure out yourself– it takes care of a lot for you, and actually gives you useful error messages when you do something wrong.
Right now, I feel like I need something that’s easy enough so I can get something working and start messing with the more basic programming concepts, then I can go back and do something more complex with a more complex language. I’m going to try to keep working with Ruby and Rails to build some website stuff (maybe even with AJAX!), until I feel more comfortable with programming, then eventually I’ll move back to learning Cocoa. Or perhaps RubyCocoa.