Rails Day 2006 – A Nuby's Experience


So I have been spending Rails Day trying to learn Ruby programming so I can interface with my programmers and perhaps develop a bit of the code myself.  Forgetting the fact that my skills in this arena don’t even include CSS let alone a good working understanding of MVC, things are pretty bumpy.  Still, I am going through all the relevant screencasts, guides and tutorials.  Perhaps by 9pm tonight I will be able to actually build the program I sketched out last night.  If not, at least I have a good base of knowledge for going forward.

I had promised myself I would stay away from learning programming languages, but I am also frustrated by not being able to get simple things done for myself, so I figured I might as well at least invest a few days in seeing how easy it really is.  Here is what I have found so far:

  1. If you often exchange words for one another and don’t have a clear logical approach to follow off of a key, it becomes very difficult to make everything in the code work together without breaking… al lot!
  2. Configuring the development environment is a real bitch.  None of the Mac OS X tutorials had all of the information I needed to know.  I had to poke around in different guides, help files and elsewhere just to get the pieces in place so that I could understand what where to even start.  Then the tutorial used different line commands than my environment.
  3. These guys who know what they are doing go way too fast for any Nuby to follow.  Ridiculously fast – perhaps because the presentation they were giving was too time constrained.  But seriously, would it have been that hard to record another version at a slightly slower speed?  Or is this just another tactic to keep more people from learning how to program?

Well, I was able to get the test Blog app up and running, but eventually broke it somehow, even though I followed the steps exactly and double checked the code for syntax or other errors.  So I ended up throwing it out.  I guess I can try to recreate the whole thing one more time to make sure I follow everything exactly (i renamed a couple of fields for my own usage).  For now though, I am going to take a break…

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