Learning Rails: Introduction

Table of Contents

I’ve wanted to learn Ruby on Rails for a few years.  I like the simplicity and elegance of the framework and the resulting projects.  I have started to learn it in the past, but I always end up quitting because I don’t have something specific to work on.  This time I am starting with a plan to build something useful, and post the progress for the world to see.

The Plan

I will create a new project from scratch using Ruby on Rails and document the journey here.  For me, there is no better way to learn about new technology than to create something useful and write about it.

Along the way, we will cover:

  • Creating a project with rails.
  • Implementing something useful.
  • Writing tests.
  • Source control.
  • Deploying the application.

I will cover each step in the process with an individual post and I will try to keep everything short and simple.  I will deploy early and often.  Each version will be deployed separately and linked from the relevant posts so you can see the progress as we go.

The Project

I will create a URL shortener, njeni.us.  Why a URL shortener?  It’s a relatively simple project that I think fits well into this plan. It’s something I will actually use when I post links on twitter. And finally, it’s just plain cool to have my very own vanity short URLs!

I’m sure the project will evolve as I go, but here are the features I would like to see in the project.

  • Create a short URL.
  • Redirect clicker to site.
  • AJAX
  • Implement an API.
  • Track and display statistics.

Follow Along

If this sounds interesting, follow along.  You can see all the posts in this series at the Table of Contents, or subscribe to the blog to get the latest posts as soon as they are written.

I’d love to hear your comments and suggestions, so please let me know what you think.

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