“Learn to Program” by Chris Pine

So I thought I’d start easy with my Ruby, and I bought Chris Pine’s book on amazon.com…

The book is super basic, barely a 101 primer but it’s great to sort of get you in the state of mind you’re in as a non-programmer who has set the goal of learning a programming language. My only programming experience (apart from some multi-line Excel macros if you can call that programming) goes back to the years 1986-1988 when I was dabbling with BASIC. All attempts during college to master even the simplest Visual Basic failed because that language’s got such a God-awful syntax (right word?) that I just couldn’t get off the ground. Ruby, on the other hand, is recommended everywhere as clear and intuitive. From what I can tell, that’s true. So far the resemblence with BASIC is strong. And I am glad about that. BASIC always made sense. In fact, I think that – looking back – spending a couple of years writing funny BASIC code as a teenager has shaped the way I approach certain computing/data processing problems. It’s become part of my BIOS.

But back to reading. This is a one-afternoon read to get you started. The next book has already been ordered. I’m ready to start coding !

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