Yesterday I attempted to put Mono and MonoDevelop on my MacBook Air, and I decided after twenty minutes that if I want to learn something new about .NET, I probably need to buy a PC (or use BootCamp to dual boot my iMac, which has more disc space).
Overnight, a friend on Twitter suggested Ruby, which I had never played with. So, today, I thought I’d give it a shot. I’m fairly comfortable with *nix and shell scripts, so I figured this would be fun.
First, I went to the Ruby website and used RVM to get the latest version down. This took a few minutes, but as with most packaging systems, RVM worked perfectly and downloaded all of the missing prerequisites that I needed for using Ruby as a shell programmer. We’ll worry about UI later, if I decide that it’s important enough.
The next step was to go through the Ruby in Twenty Minutes tutorial which really would take that short a time, if I were not the kind of coder who needs to type things in to understand them. Incidentally, I found that TextWrangler on the Mac, by my heroes at BareBones Software, is a perfect editor for Ruby on the Mac, with syntax highlighting and everything that makes you feel a bit more comfortable. I have got lazy with Intellisense and ReSharper in the .NET world.
Now I am starting to work my way, step-by-step, through Ruby using the RubyKoans website. I have got to the array slicing and array slicing with ranges bits, and I am finding it fascinating.
I’ll keep playing with it this week and (I hope) blog about it some more. If you’re out there, and you want to play along, go get Ruby and get learning something new.