Mini Book Review of IronRuby Unleashed by Shay Friedman

Note: Cross posted from IUpdateable from Eric Nelson.


When I get some time (and hell starts to look a little chilly) I would love to do a more detailed review. But I wanted to get something “out there” as I really like this book and reviews of it seem a little thin on the ground.

In brief:

  • Is it a good book? Yes
  • Would I recommend this book to a .NET developer who was new to Ruby? Yes (This is me by the way)
  • Would I recommend this book to a Ruby developer who was new to .NET ? Yes
  • Would I recommend this book to a developer who sometimes does Ruby and sometimes does .NET? Yes
  • Would I recommend this book to a developer new to .NET and new to Ruby? Yes

The above demonstrates how well balanced this book is (IMHO).

What I like about it:

  • Its assumes pretty much no knowledge of IronRuby or .NET. All it asks is that you are a developer interested in IronRuby. Yet it manages to cover off the topics in a good degree of detail.
    • If you are a Ruby developer you skip Part 2, if you are a .NET developer you skip some of Part 1 and whizz through the short intros to the individual technologies such as WPF.
  • It is definitely not a “lets makes the manual look pretty” book – this is original content thoughtfully written and presented.
  • It is pretty comprehensive – in 500 pages it packs in 
    • Intro to IronRuby
    • Intro to .NET
    • Intro to Ruby
    • Using IronRuby with Windows Forms, ASP.NET, WPF, Silverlight etc
    • Getting Rails working with IronRuby
    • Unit testing with IronRuby – which I think is an excellent way for a .NET developer to start using IronRuby
    • Embedding IronRuby in a .NET app  – another interesting “first step” for a .NET developer

What I didn’t like:

  • Err… nothing yet. Ok, If I am being picky then the start of chapter 2 irked me a little as it went through the history of .NET. “The first version [of the .NET Framework] wasn’t that great”.  Felt pretty good to me compared to Java and C++ development at the time 🙂


Buy on Amazon UK | Buy on Amazon USA

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