Found in 5 comments on Hacker News
rubiquity · 2014-08-29 · Original thread
I actually recommend strongly against this book. It teaches things new people to Rails, let alone people new to programming, don't need to be messing with so early on. I'm mainly talking about the use of RSpec and some of the outdated Rails idioms.

For myself and a few people I've mentored, Agile Web Development with Rails[0] has yielded much better results. If they follow that up with Eloquent Ruby[1] they will be golden and well ahead of their peers with similar experience.

This book single-handedly breeds the "I'm a Rails Programmer!" that write terribly awful Ruby code that we all know and hate.

I don't mean to discredit Michael's hard work. Writing and maintaining a book like this is a huge achievement that I'm probably not capable of. I also appreciate that his book is at least bringing people into the Rails ecosystem. I just can't recommend it over others.

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effbott · 2013-03-25 · Original thread
Eloquent Ruby is an excellent book for beginners.

If you just want to learn some basics of Ruby without diving into an entire book, check out Ruby Monk. All of the tutorials are interactive:

michael_fine · 2012-06-10 · Original thread
So, before you start with learning Rails, I recommend learning HTML/CSS. It shouldn't take more than two weeks to get a basic understanding, and by doing that you avoid the huge hassle of building a web app while barely scraping by with the formatting. Also, you might want to drop both learning javascript and vim, because you can build a solid web app without js, and it's very hard to learn multiple dissimilar things at once.

After that, a great resource is, and codeschool in general. It's a series of incredibly well made video presentations, which you are then tested on. Once/before you finish that, you should work on actually building an application, maybe following

Once you have finished that, you are well on your way to proficiency, and probably have enough understanding of rails to build your application. Some great resources are,, and

If you have done that, and you still want to learn more, then I would learn more about javascript, and read The Rails 3 Way: Finally to learn more about Ruby, read Eloquent Ruby:

Once you have done that, you should have a pretty solid grounding in Ruby, Rails, and web development in general.

ptomato · 2011-08-04 · Original thread
I can't speak specifically to how idiomatic it is as I've yet to read it, but I've heard recommended a few times.
tijmenb · 2011-06-24 · Original thread
Good for you. I've started working with Ruby and RoR about three weeks ago now, also from PHP. These are some of the the things I've read/watched to get a grasp on the whole:

Why's Poignent Guide To Ruby

I found the RailsCasts invaluable. It's great to just see someone code stuff, instead of finished examples:

Read every one of the Rails guides:

I started reading Russ Olsen's Eloquent Ruby yesterday, which is absolutely awesome. I'm already half way trough. Wish he could rewrite every programming book I ever read.

It felt really daunting at first, because it seems there's so much new stuff to learn (Ruby, Rails, Passenger/Phusion, Gems, Capistrano, RVM, Rake, db migrations, etc etc). But hang in there. As I said, I started only a couple of weeks ago and already feel like I never want to go back.

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