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Agile Web Development with Rails: A Pragmatic Guide
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Agile Web Development with Rails: A Pragmatic Guide

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  2,082 ratings  ·  105 reviews
Rails is a full-stack, open source web framework that enables you to create full-featured, sophisticated web-based applications, but with a twist... A full Rails application probably has less total code than the XML you'd need to configure the same application in other frameworks. With this book you'll learn how to use "ActiveRecord" to connect business objects and databas ...more
Paperback, 558 pages
Published July 28th 2005 by Pragmatic Bookshelf (first published July 15th 2005)
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Average rating 3.84  · 
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Dimitrios
Feb 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Incredible book, perfect companion for new or experienced developers willing to dive into Rails.

Even though the book is updated for Rails 5 it stills mentions apache / passenger in the deployment section without any mention on how to make ActionCable work with that stack.
Josh Frankel
Jan 28, 2014 rated it it was ok
Not a good book for starting to learn the language. A much better choice is Michael Hartl's book Learn Web Development with Rails
Tom Purl
Jan 05, 2010 rated it really liked it
In general, this book does a fairly good job of helping you create a rails-based application. Part 3 includes some great in-depth information on the topics that are briefly discussed in Part 2.

I only have one real gripe about this book. It packs in lots of topics (e.g. db theory, AJAX, unit testing, security, deployment), but it doesn't really tell you much about them. Therefore, if you have a problem, then good luck figuring it out using the content in the book.

A good example is the final cha
...more
Sam
Jul 25, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Programmers
If you are interested in getting started with Rails, this is the way to go. I'd recommend you read the first few chapters of Thomas' "Programming Ruby" first, to get a foundation in ruby first. ...more
Brent
Jan 22, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: techie
I read the first 100 pages last night. I'm really starting to like this rails stuff. This is really helping me get a handle on Rails. Good stuff.
Michael Economy
[Review of Second Edition]

Dave thomas is a pretty good writer, I thought that The Pragmatic Programmer was an excellent book. However, alot of the garbage suggested in AWD makes me doubt how much experience the author has writing scalable, agile, high traffic web-applications.

If you go into this book looking to learn how to code with rails, thats fine, but don't expect to learn to program well for the web from this book. Infact, be prepared to ignore large portions of the book.

Anyway I guess thi
...more
Jevgeni Holodkov
Nov 25, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: rapid
It was one of the books with I read using rapid reading techniques. It means, that my review is going to be biased.

I liked the book - the first part was a hands-on tutorial on building a rails application from stratch. I believe it covered all the most popular issues we have when building web applications. The book includes information on how to do automated testing, like functional and unit testing. However, it expects to enter all commands to the rails console and does not always provide "res
...more
Mark
Aug 29, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: technical
I met Dave Thomas at a Ruby on Rails class. He really knows his stuff and I refer to his book at work.
Sebastian Gebski
I needed a Rails refresh (without getting to deep - like in "The Rails Way") & that's precisely what I got.

Up-to-date (actually the most up-to-date book on the market on this topic at the moment of writing this review), very well structured, edited & presented - PragProg NEVER disappoints here. Their book can proudly hold the label "by developers for developers". Great code samples, clear description, fine pace - it really worked for me flawlessly. Maybe it's the case of knowing Rails earlier (b
...more
Aleksandr Kudashkin
This is a high level overview of the framework. While it gives you a nice picture of what is possible with Rails, some of the practices are very questionable like data migrations or all-in-one React components. Unfortunately, I've seen so many of this code in production it is not very easy to maintain this foundation.
Imtiaz Emu
Aug 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: programming
If you’re new to Rails, you’ll get step-by-step guidance. If you’re an experienced developer, this book will give you the comprehensive, insider information you need.
Vladyslav Siriniok
Good for teaching beginners
Web Destiny Solutions
Feb 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
As a developer, these books are the best reference to help me to develop a website for Web Development Company, Web Destiny Solutions. ...more
John Smith
Jun 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
it is really interesting & very beneficial to freshers who are into web design company. It is quite nice to read & understand the language. ...more
Olivia
Jan 10, 2020 rated it liked it
Only partly read, the version I have is too out of date for my needs.
Djeison
Oct 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Really interesting work, an excellent walk-through Rails framework. For me, as a Java Web Developer, it was a highly clarifying reading where I got to understand better this framework.
Anton Antonov
Nov 21, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: technical
Buzzwords don't make a great book.

"AWDR4" is a ... mess. The book doesn't have a clear goal of what to teach you. The "Rails is Agile" yada-yada, recital of the Agile manifesto and etc is just a facade. Rails is not an universal fix it all hammer that scales (architecture wise) in any project and size.

I might actually say that Rails as it is now in 2015, is in much trouble and definitely has to push focus on architectural changes and improvements instead of useless features *cough* *cough* Acti
...more
Thomas Wolfe
Sep 01, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Thomas by: Michael Kory Woods
Shelves: ruby, programming, rails
Suggested by my friend Kory. I read the beta version of this book. Again, in some ways I prefer books with a few errors, keeps me on my toes. I've got a few ideas on what I'm going to build with this new tool, I'll post back here when I do (although now I kind of want to play with jquery since I really know nothing about that library and it could prove useful in rails, or well any type of web apps). It's quite verbose, but I guess for people who want their hand held a bit (I'll admit, hand-holdi ...more
Darryl
Aug 03, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Decent book to learn rails. I'm a total noob when it comes to web apps, yet this book was good enough to get me through my first site. The approach they take is to write a full website first, then go back and fill in the details. I think this was a good approach as long as you're willing to do the whole example site along with the book. However, it made it hard to use the book as a reference once you run off on your own. Many times I knew I had seen a topic in the book and couldn't find it later ...more
Shaun
Sep 09, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: web-programming
After introducing myself to Ruby, I read this book to become more familiar with the Rails framework. I was very pleased with how this book was laid out. The first section has you dig right into creating a basic storefront by guiding you through the basics of using the Rails framework. This first section teaches you everything you need to create a basic site of your own. The latter sections of the book go into depth regarding each concept you learned in the initial sections as well as other advan ...more
Krom
Mar 03, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was the best book I found for Rails web development. If I had to choose between "Simply Rails" and this book, I would choose this book. The reason being that Simply Rails is a very gentle walk through of an example website, and that's about it. This book has that as the first section, and then continues on with more technical discussions of the major moving parts in the rails framework, and thus serves as both a primer and a reference.

The 4th edition is due to arrive soon, and is retooled
...more
Andrew
Jun 09, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I think this is really a great book, describing everything you need to start with Rails. For this reason as well as to recommend anyone starting out with Rails to read this book, I rate it 5 stars. However, the book is not advanced enough to teach Rails from scratch to developers already familiar with modern web development. Anyway, I recommend even experienced web developers moving to Rails to run quickly through this book, take notes and move on to "The Rails 4 Way". ...more
Chris Maguire
Jul 30, 2013 rated it liked it
Great intro to rails. It felt a little backwards building up a site before going into the details, but it wasn't too bad. I feel confident now that I could sit down at a rails app and at lease have an idea of what's going on.

I didn't follow along or do the exercises, which is crucial, and the book was still good.

This book changed my opinion of rails from "meh" to "wow". Rails is very powerful stuff. I don't necessarily like Ruby all that much but Rails is a pretty full-featured and capable too
...more
Panagiotis Atmatzidis
The intro says that you can keep up if you don't know ruby and with relatively little CSS/HTML but I don't think so. I don't know much about CSS or HTML but I know ruby and have written two applications using Sinatra and MVC. Everything seems easy, I am trying to cope with the abstraction level but I wouldn't say that this book is for beginners. On the other hand I like its approach, goes directly to web development without loosing too much over various subjects, rails is a framework after all, ...more
Randall
The first half of this book does a nice job of holding your hand and leading you through the creation of an application. Then the authors stick their hands in their pockets and let you fend for yourself. They move from consistent and explained examples to tech shorthand which is the most frequent boo boo of programming books for beginners. I have yet to find the book that speaks English (as opposed to Tech-ese) from cover to cover.
Paul
Sep 04, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: rails
A good book to have read at some point for historical reasons - DHH's involvement kind of makes that an imperative. However, it's dated (actually pre 1.0) so many of the specifics are no longer correct or recommended, and it misses big chunks of what is now conventional rails (RESTful routes for example). A better source for current practice (at least until 3.0) is The Rails Way by Obie Fernandez
Beau
Aug 15, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Essential reading for savvy designers and developers cleverly boarding the ruby on rails train. All designers should learn to code. Ruby is a beautiful language and rails makes a practical partner to bring your next napkin sketch into reality. This book was written in part by DHH, the creator of rails among other things. That rendered the book a trusted source for conventions and best practices.
Quinn Daley
Aug 10, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read the first edition of this book years ago and, wanting to get back into Rails, I read it again to bring myself back up to date.

It was good to read the major differences since Rails 0.9, although most of the book was not new to me. Most importantly, however, it's given me all the right pointers in the direction of where to go next to learn the specifics I need for my projects.
Chris Kottom
Dec 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Still one of the best books for beginners to get their heads around a growing framework or for old hands at Rails to get a quick refresh and overview of the new parts of the framework. It's a little light on some parts of Rails development (testing, Rails APIs, etc.) but a solid overview without being over long.
Dan
Apr 18, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: comuterese
Rails is my 1st framework I've paid any attention to, and it looks like a lot of fun. It also looks like there are a lot of rules to follow. I'm sure I'll be able to break the rules once I figure a few things out with Rails, and maybe this book will get me there.
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