Question to all you newbies (others welcome)

Discussion in 'Ruby' started by SonOfLilit, Apr 7, 2007.

  1. SonOfLilit

    SonOfLilit Guest

    Hello everyone,

    As you hopefully know, I founded, a
    project that offers volunteer help to Ruby newbies.

    My question is where would it be most effective to advertise
    RubyMentor? What are the places newbies go to first when deciding to
    learn Ruby these days? How can I make sure that every newbie knows
    RubyMentor exists, just like they probably know that the Pickaxe I is
    free online and that Rails has some very helpful screencasts?

    Any feedback appreciated from newbie and veteran alike,

    Aur Saraf
    SonOfLilit, Apr 7, 2007
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  2. SonOfLilit

    shawn bright Guest

    The first place i looked was google, then signed up for this list and
    a couple of help forums. So, i guess, get a good page rank with
    i think your idea is a cool one. btw

    shawn bright, Apr 7, 2007
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  3. SonOfLilit

    SonOfLilit Guest

    Page rank for what keywords?

    Page rank means having people link to it...

    Anybody with a relevant site willing to help with that?

    SonOfLilit, Apr 7, 2007
  4. SonOfLilit

    Simon Rozet Guest

    Your project is really interesting. IMHO that's the better way to
    learn something. I think Ruby is the only language with a mentor
    concept. So, could use it as a marketing argument. imho is the better way to advertise about it.
    "Ruby is only programming language with one-to-one mentor helping
    people to learn"
    That's a poor sentence, but you get an idea :)
    Simon Rozet, Apr 7, 2007
  5. SonOfLilit

    Robert Dober Guest

    Hmm are we already there? I was contacted once but it was completely
    outisde my expertise, I tried to find an interested mentor but there
    was nobody, no big deal, we tried at least;)
    But it might be wise to get some feedback before boldly going where no
    one has gone before;) e.g. stating thar Ruby has a Mentor Concept,
    which seems slightly exaggerated to me, right now, any different
    opions about this ?
    Robert Dober, Apr 7, 2007
  6. SonOfLilit

    Chris Carter Guest

    I agree, we should wait a bit, and see how it works before we start
    advertising on The wiki leads me to believe that it
    has only actually happened once. It would be neat if we could get it
    on maybe the mailing list subscribe page, and on ruby-forum, as just a
    little hint. something like Remember: There is a community driven
    one-on-one mentor program you can sign up for, try it! It's easy!
    Chris Carter, Apr 7, 2007
  7. Hello Aur:

    About 6 weeks ago, when I started looking at Ruby, I went to Google and
    typed "ruby programming". The first hit was the page and I clicking on it. So, I'd suggest
    placing something on that page.

    On that page there is a "Get Started, it’s easy!" section on the top
    right. I'd suggest putting a "Get Help", "Get Help from a RubyMentor"
    or something like that in that section.

    I didn't trip over the other Ruby sites and books like Pickaxe until
    many hours or days later because I was busy looking at all the stuff on
    the page.

    Michael Brooks, Apr 7, 2007
  8. SonOfLilit

    Phrogz Guest

    As so many new users seem to post to the mailing list/discussion group/
    newsgroup via, I would see if you can get
    it on there.
    Phrogz, Apr 7, 2007
  9. SonOfLilit

    ChrisKaelin Guest

    I totally agree, what people say about a single-entry-point: ruby- We just love, when we have one instance, where we can start
    (gentoo had this problem too years ago, and many open-source-projects
    also suffer of too many websites).
    Remember, we have raa, ruby-doc, ruby-quiz etc.etc. A primary website
    like should also be used to bundle some of them or at
    least link to those pages in an appropriate way... An open wiki for
    everything would also be very useful, as we could put some tutorials
    for other ruby-related topics in there (tk, sdl, mysql)
    ChrisKaelin, Apr 7, 2007
  10. SonOfLilit

    James Britt Guest has been hosting the Ruby community wiki for, what, 7
    years now?

    Shame more people don't know to use it.
    James Britt, Apr 7, 2007
  11. SonOfLilit

    Jeff Guest

    Hi James,

    Well, actually the home page's main article is dated
    from 2005, which makes it look likes nobody cares about the site

    The "New Ruby Users Survey", the top link in the right-hand sidebar,
    has a different css applied to it and seems to be from 2004. For
    being the top link, these two facts deter users from thinking they've
    found a good place for Ruby information.

    The second link, "FAQ" probably a popular thing for newbies to click
    on, is broken.

    The "Ruby Wiki" link, the third link, leads to the wiki and it looks
    really promising... but then the very first Getting Started link
    gives me a redirect notice that does not resolve automatically...
    again not confidence-inspiring.

    Same goes for the next link, the "Ruby Nuby" information.

    That's when I stopped trying to use, and perhaps that's
    been the experience for others as well. I don't think it's because I
    "don't know how to use it." :)

    Please don't take this the wrong way... I bet there's a lot of good
    information on the wiki, and obviously many people have donated time
    and effort to it. But at least right now, it doesn't seem to be a
    good resource for new Ruby users.

    Just my two cents.

    Jeff, Apr 7, 2007
  12. SonOfLilit

    ChrisKaelin Guest

    For me too, that's why I did not look at it very long. Sorry for my
    ignorance, but I was thinking a bit more of an easy "how-to" style
    wiki. "How to include Enumerable into your classes" etc.

    I'd really love to contribute my tiny bits of knowledge there.
    ChrisKaelin, Apr 7, 2007
  13. SonOfLilit

    James Britt Guest

    Valid point. Given that there's a new Ruby or Rails
    blog/article/forum/aggregator/zine popping up every other day it's not
    surprising. Hard to get new content.

    <lengthy_critique_snipped />


    I won't. I don't run that site. If I had time to write up a lengthy
    critique, I might consider lending a hand to help those who do run it.
    A wiki is what its users make it.

    Still, the main page of the wiki

    has numerous links for getting started, under the first section, Ruby
    for the Nuby.

    I won't dispute that the site could be improved, both in content and
    layout. But, like most Ruby sites, it's a volunteer community effort.

    I get all sorts of comments about, most helpful, but some
    are just lists of complaints. To those, my answer is (almost) always,
    "Where's the patch?"
    James Britt, Apr 8, 2007
  14. SonOfLilit

    Jeff Guest

    I totally agree, and that's why I never said anything before, because
    I know I wouldn't have the time to contribute. It's only the
    answering the OP's question that I decided to say something. I hope
    it didn't come off too much like mindless complaining.

    Jeff, Apr 8, 2007
  15. No, not at all. It was critique, and valid critique (similar to what I
    experienced when using rubygarden) of the site. And without critique,
    the website cannot be made more useful.

    I personally will probably provide a code snippet to handle
    SQLite3-Ruby's odd handling of result sets (I'm not too good at
    getting my head around nested arrays, and I'm probably not the only

    And concerning the "Where's the Patch?" - attitude: It is important to
    keep in mind, that not everybody is able to work with
    HTML/Ruby/CSS/@stuff, but it is possible to voice critique. Of course,
    such a critique has to be valid and thought out.

    Phillip "CynicalRyan" Gawlowski

    "By Zarglewang's thuppy!"
    - Illiad
    Phillip Gawlowski, Apr 8, 2007
  16. SonOfLilit

    Phrogz Guest

    Ah, but:

    It's hard to take, but (IMO) complaints are still valid and helpful
    without patches. In some cases (if the complainer has no coding/
    writing/designing skill) they are far *better* without a patch,
    because they let you focus on the problem at hand, and not some
    particularly foolish fix they propose.
    Phrogz, Apr 8, 2007
  17. SonOfLilit

    SonOfLilit Guest

    It IS advertised in ruby-lang. Didn't anybody stumble upon it? Here,
    the last entry:

    I've asked James to put it in a more central place, but he asked to
    first see where the project is going (which is impossible with how
    decentralized it is right now).

    I couldn't contact the ruby-forum owner. Never got a response. Anybody
    can help with that?

    SonOfLilit, Apr 8, 2007
  18. SonOfLilit

    James Britt Guest

    Probably no more than I came off as mindless ranting. :)

    Bottom line, perhaps people with the time and inclination might consider
    contacting the folks running the site and see if there's some way to help.

    (I say that with some reluctance, because, running some Ruby sites
    myself, not all offers of help are well-expressed, however well
    intentioned. )
    James Britt, Apr 8, 2007
  19. SonOfLilit

    James Britt Guest

    Granted. But one should keep in mind that, most often, the person on
    the receiving end of such critique are short on time, and if someone has
    the time and experience to assembled a lengthy list of alleged problems,
    then offering some sort of solution for them seems reasonable.
    James Britt, Apr 8, 2007
  20. SonOfLilit

    James Britt Guest

    When someone tells me I have a misspelling or that something is
    rendering poorly in Opera, that's fine.

    When I get three pages of "Here's why your site sucks", that's a
    different story.

    Somewhere in between, people should start considering that time spent
    complaining about 10 things could be spent fixing any one of them.

    James Britt

    "I was born not knowing and have had only a little
    time to change that here and there."
    - Richard P. Feynman
    James Britt, Apr 8, 2007
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