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Practical Rails Plugins: for beginners?

Rogerio Kioshi
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 12, 2005
Posts: 690

I'd like to know if "Practical Rails Plugins" can be read by beginners. Which are the pre-requirements for reading this book?

Thank you.

Nick Plante

Joined: Sep 01, 2008
Posts: 13
The book is targeted at beginning to intermediate Rails developers. You'll need at least a passing familiarity with Rails and Ruby to get the most out of it -- not much time is spent on Ruby syntax, for example.

It's purpose really is to demonstrate to new developers how they can leverage the vast sea of powerful third party plugins to accelerate their development projects. In this way, it's a lot like a typical recipes book. The difference is that each recipe is used within the context of a real-world application and uses one or more plugins to develop some significant feature.
Davin Atkins

Joined: Jan 10, 2008
Posts: 6
A couple of questions for you!

This book seems to focus on using existing plug-ins - does it touch on creating new rails plug-ins as well?

Does this book cover the Rails Engines plugin?

Nick Plante

Joined: Sep 01, 2008
Posts: 13
Hi Dave,

There is a single chapter at the end of the book dedicated to the art of plugin development itself. It walks the reader through the creation of a typical plugin and illustrates how to use the hooks that Rails provides and some Ruby metaprogramming practices to graft new features on to Rails itself. This isn't really the focus of the book (which is on using pre-existing plugins), but we felt it was important to at least address it, and also talk about testing and distributing your plugin code as well.

Although its existence is addressed, the Rails Engines plugin is not used specifically in any of the projects. We had a really tough time of narrowing down the list of plugins we started with to those that felt most practical for beginning to intermediate Rails developers, so it's not that we don't think it's an important one .
I agree. Here's the link:
subject: Practical Rails Plugins: for beginners?
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