View Full Version : Beginner learning Ruby. Anybody want to join in?

May 11th, 2007, 12:58 AM
I'm a beginner programmer and learning Ruby. Anybody here doing the same and want to join and learn together? Bored here. :popcorn:

May 11th, 2007, 01:01 AM
well, I am very comfortable with Perl ... but don't mind learning Ruby :)

May 11th, 2007, 03:03 PM
:guitar: .

May 11th, 2007, 03:56 PM
I have the pickaxe right beside me, and it seems to be the next on my "to read" list. Count me in.

May 11th, 2007, 04:20 PM
I am learning Ruby. For me learning the language is very easy. I have been programming most of my life and it is similar enough to other things I have done that it is not much trouble.

My problems are getting the environment set up.

I love actually writing code. I don't like setting up computers. I never could get it to work in Eclipse so now am just writing code in gedit and running it from the command line.

I have not installed rails yet. My mysql install has problems. I find all this a pain, but love coding.

What is your background in programming? Are you having any problems? I will answer any questions I can.

May 11th, 2007, 09:48 PM
I am beginner in programming.

May 11th, 2007, 09:51 PM
...or you could try Tomcat/JSP programming with Netbeans which is kewl and runs out of the box... :KS

May 13th, 2007, 12:10 AM

May 14th, 2007, 08:12 AM
Hey. I was using Ruby on Rails (just starting out) on my old pc. Trying to get started using it now I've switched to Ubuntu. Still have no idea how to install RoR on Linux.

May 14th, 2007, 08:55 PM

I've only dabbled, but the best method seems to be to install the basic ruby and ruby-gems packages supplied by the distribution, and then use the Ruby Gems package manager to fetch Rails etc. That way you can keep up with the new releases as they come out by upgrading with Ruby Gems.

May 14th, 2007, 09:55 PM
I'm learning Ruby so that I can program in Rails. For those that asked, here is how to set it up (you might need to change the file name for ruby gems to the latest version):

sudo aptitude install ruby rdoc irb ri
wget http://rubyforge.org/frs/download.php/11289/rubygems-0.9.0.tgz
tar -zvfx rubygems-0.9.0.tgz
cd rubygems-0.9.0/
sudo ruby setup.rb
sudo gem install rails

For those of you looking for an editor, see my other post (Great Rails Editor for Gnome) - Scribes fits the bill if it is set up properly.

I love what I've done so far in Ruby - it such an elegant language.

Maybe for us all to learn, we should set each challenges, like the weekly programming challenge that used to grace this forum. Nothing too hard, though, as we are all learning - just something to provide motivation.


May 14th, 2007, 10:02 PM
Here's a guide a wrote to starting your own Rails blog - just something basic to get your first rails app up and running:

Ruby on Rails Blog Project
Get software ready
Fire up a text editor, terminal, folder and firefox

go to terminal, navigate to the folder where you want to keep all your rails projects, then type:

$ rails blog

This will create the Rails directory structure, now type:

$ cd blog

to change to the blog directory.
Now type

$ ruby script/server

This will launch the built-in mongrel server. Go into firefox and visit http://localhost:3000
You should get the Ruby on Rails congratulations page to say that you are on board and riding the rails!

Create Databases

To set up a mysql password for the first time, log in

mysql -u root -p
just press enter (there is no password set initially)
Then type:

use mysql;
update user set password=PASSWORD("p@$$word") where User='root';
flush privileges;

Now go back to the terminal and launch mysql as the root user

$ mysql -u root -p
$ [enter your password]

Create the development database:

mysql> create database blog_development;
mysql> create database blog_test;
mysql> create database blog_production;

Grant priveliges on these database to your normal user:

mysql> grant all privileges on blog_development.* to 'username'@'localhost' identified by 'p@$$word';
mysql> grant all privileges on blog_test.* to 'username'@'localhost' identified by 'p@$$word';
mysql> grant all privileges on blog_production.* to 'username'@'localhost' identified by 'p@$$word';

open the database.yml file with a text editor (it's in >blog>config>database.yml) and fill in each database connection info as:

adapter: mysql
database: blog_development
username: username
password: p@$$word
host: localhost

save the file and close it

Go into the terminal and navigate to the blog folder and type:

blog$ rake db:migrate

This will test to see if rails can connect to the database

NOTE - you might get an error here about require_gem being obsolete. To remedy this, open the file boot.rb (in the same config folder as database.yml) and change the reference to require_gem to just 'gem'

Create Posts Model
Go back into the terminal and type:

blog $ ruby script /generate model Post

This will create a model for the blog's posts.

Now go into the migration file, 001_create_posts.rb (path: blog>db>migrate>001_create_posts.rb) and create the relevant columns for the database:

class CreatePosts < ActiveRecord::Migration

def self.up
create_table :posts do |t|
t.column :title, :string
t.column :body, :text
t.colum :posted_on, :datetime

def self.down
drop_table :posts

Go into the terminal and navigate to the blog folder and type:

blog$ rake db:migrate

This will add the table 'posts' and three columns to the database.

Build some Scaffolding and then enter some data:
open the file post_controller.rb file (path: blog>app>controllers>post_controller.rb) and change it to:

class PostController < ApplicationController
scaffold :post

Now go to http://localhost:3000/post in your web browser.
You should now see an interface that will allow you to add new posts. Add some test posts and enjoy....


May 14th, 2007, 10:16 PM
I'm not sure whether it was there in previous versions, but Feisty has a package for Ruby Gems 0.9.0 ("rubygems", no hyphen), so you can now install it along with the main Ruby packages.

The bit that I'm finding the hardest is wiring up Rails applications to work with standard Web servers - Lighttpd with FastCGI at present, but I tried Apache and FastCGI a while ago (bad idea).

May 16th, 2007, 10:57 PM
Hey the post with the blog code was pretty exciting.

I think when the work week from hell ends I'm going to focus on getting ruby working and try that out. I have a naffy domain name im doing nothing with after all...

The post did make me realise that I have no idea how to get SQL going in ubuntu (does open office have something) I also am not clear whether the command line instructions will be the same as they were when I was using windows.

As you can guess I'm not all that tech savvy...yet.

May 17th, 2007, 12:42 AM
I have to check out Rails, the structure and framework is something I've never really seen before.

May 17th, 2007, 12:50 PM

Here is the code to install mysql on Ubuntu:

Use Synaptic to install the following packages:


Then type the following into a terminal:

sudo apt-get install phpmyadmin apache2 libapache2-mod-php5

The terminal commands in Ubuntu are generally the same as in Windows.

Hope that helps,


May 17th, 2007, 12:54 PM
Here is a challenge for people trying to learn Ruby:

Challenge 1 (Easy)

Write a program that asks for your name, then gives you a personalised greeting.

Extend this by having the greeting based on the current time.

Challenge 2 (harder):

Write a short program that plays higher or lower - The computer 'thinks' of a number between 1 and 100 and the player tries to guess. The computer gives feedback of 'higher' or 'lower' until the player guesses correctly.

Extend this by reversing the roles - the player thinks of a number and the computer tries to guess with feedback of higher or lower from the player.

Post any entries or questions here.


May 17th, 2007, 10:38 PM
I had a quick try at this, not sure if it's is any good - there may be far easier ways to do a lot of these things in ruby, I've just applied general logic to it and got by on that. The only ruby-specific method there is .chop, so if anybody can see anyway to clean up the code then please feel free to tell me!

#!/usr/bin/env ruby

def get_input(msg)
#returns an integer from user input
printf msg
return gets.to_i

def compare(unum, value)
#compares the values passed - returns 1 if equal, otherwise 0
if unum == value
puts "Well done! You guessed correctly!"
return 1
elsif unum > value
printf "Lower; "
return 0
elsif unum < value
printf "Higher; "
return 0

def comp_choose()
#called when user wants the computer to choose the number to guess
num = 100*rand
num = num.to_i

puts "I have picked a number between 1 and 100."

unum = get_input("Please enter an integer betwen 1 and 100: ")
end until (unum > 0 && unum < 101)
#qflag is 1 only when the guessed value and random value are equal
qflag = compare(unum, num)
end until qflag == 1

def player_choose()
#called when the user wants the computer to guess the number
unum = get_input("Please enter an integer between 1 and 100: ")
end until (unum > 0 && unum < 101)

#lower and upper limits. third value is the calculated value if correct
limits = [1, 100, 0]

limits = find_num(limits)
#if (lower_limit - upper_limit) == 1 then they are cheating
if (limits[0] - limits[1]).abs == 1
cflag = 1
#if there is only one integer between the limits, it must be the answer
elsif (limits[0] - limits[1]).abs == 2
limits[2] = limits[0] + 1
end until limits[2] != 0

if cflag == 1
puts "You were cheating - there are no integers between #{limits[0]} and #{limits[1]}!"
puts "I found your number - #{limits[2]}!"

def find_num(limits)
cnum = rand(limits[1] -1)
end until cnum > limits[0]

puts "I have thought of a number: #{cnum}"

printf "Should I go (h)igher or (l)ower, or am I (c)orrect? "
ans = gets.chop
end until (ans == "h" || ans == "l" || ans == "c")

if ans == "h"
limits[0] = cnum
return limits
elsif ans == "l"
limits[1] = cnum
return limits
limits[2] = cnum
return limits

def main
puts "Who would you like to pick the number"
printf "\t1) The Computer\n\t2) The User\n"

choice = get_input("Please enter 1 or 2: ")
end until (choice == 1 || choice == 2)

if choice == 1


May 20th, 2007, 02:54 AM
Here is a challenge for people trying to learn Ruby:

Challenge 1 (Easy)

Write a program that asks for your name, then gives you a personalised greeting.

Extend this by having the greeting based on the current time.

I opened the QuickRef once or twice, but here it is:

class GrabInfo
def time_stuff
t = Time.now
@time_to_print = t.strftime("%I:%M%p on %A %B %d, %Y")
if t.strftime("%p") == "PM"
if t.strftime("%I").to_i <=> 1..5
@greeting = "Good afternoon"
elsif t.strftime("%I").to_i <=> 6..11
@greeting = "Good evening"
elsif t.strftime("%I").to_i <=> 12
@greeting = "Good afternoon"
elsif t.strftime("%p") == "AM"
if t.strftime("%I").to_i <=> 1...4
@greeting = "You're up late"
elsif t.strftime("%I").to_i <=> 1...11
@greeting = "Good morning"
elsif t.strftime("%I").to_i <=> 12
@greeting = "You're up late"

def name_stuff
puts( "What is your name?" )
@name = gets.strip

def print_it
printed = puts("#{@greeting}, #{@name}! It is now #{@time_to_print}.")

gi = GrabInfo.new

Of course, you can de-Object Orient it, which removes a lot of fluff.

if you want a quick + dirty, so to speak:

name = gets.strip
puts("Hello, #{name}, it is now #{Time.now.strftime("%I:%M%p on %A %B %d, %Y")}.")

But, that's pretty messy.

May 20th, 2007, 11:53 AM
Or even just one line:

puts("Hello, #{gets.strip}, it is now #{Time.now.strftime("%I:%M%p on %A %B %d, %Y")}.")


May 20th, 2007, 03:29 PM
I'd suggest the Programming Ruby (http://pragmaticprogrammer.com/titles/ruby/index.html) book. It's fantastic. Also, Pragmatic Programmer's Rails book is good if you are looking to go onto Rails.

May 26th, 2007, 08:26 PM
I've been dabbling in ruby and rails for the last couple of weeks. Ruby is so simple and so seemingly complex at first - all at the same time..

I've run into a probem with the environment though. I can't get rails to connect to mysql if I use a password. If I remove the password in mysql - rails connects, add a password to the account and to the database.yml file - rails won't connect. For obvious reasons, I want to use a password..

I found some other posters who said that mysql had changed their password mechanism, but that was supposedly in mysql4 and I'm using mysql5 with rails 1.8 (supposedly should use the same mechanism?).

So.. another post said to install mysql through gem - that errored out:

> sudo gem install --include-dependencies mysql

Need to update 9 gems from http://gems.rubyforge.org
Select which gem to install for your platform (i486-linux)
1. mysql 2.7.3 (mswin32)
2. mysql 2.7.1 (mswin32)
3. mysql 2.7 (ruby)
4. mysql 2.6 (ruby)
5. mysql 2.5.1 (ruby)
6. Cancel installation
> 3
Building native extensions. This could take a while...
extconf.rb:1:in `require': no such file to load -- mkmf (LoadError)
from extconf.rb:1

ERROR: While executing gem ... (RuntimeError)
ERROR: Failed to build gem native extension.
Gem files will remain installed in /usr/lib/ruby/gems/1.8/gems/mysql-2.7 for inspection.

Results logged to /usr/lib/ruby/gems/1.8/gems/mysql-2.7/gem_make.out

The gem_make.out file is empty, the errors above make no sense to me, and I can't turn up anything useful in google...

Anybody else have this problem?

I'm just a newbie to ruby, but IMO there needs to be an easy way to setup the environment if rails is going to seriously compete with other frameworks. I'm not giving up though...

May 26th, 2007, 08:51 PM
Ah.... found the answer. I needed to install a few more mysql drivers..

sudo apt-get install libdbd-mysql-ruby libdbd-mysql-ruby1.8 libdbd-mysql libdbd-mysql

Still not sure why gem won't install mysql, but whatver. Now I can connect to my databse with a password. I'm happy.:D

May 31st, 2007, 04:42 AM
Ah, hello, people. I have noticed more posts here. I'm still reading tutorials.

June 12th, 2007, 11:14 PM
It all looks really good. I have been thinking about trying to learn Ruby, it seems quite "easy", so to speak..