Noel Rappin Writes Here


Better Know A Ruby Thing: Methods and Access Control (part 1)

I’ll be honest, I picked this topic out of the half-dozen or so Better Know A Ruby Things on my to-do list strictly because it’s maybe the only Ruby take that I genuinely argue with people about. To be even more honest, it got away from me a bit as I started writing the argument: which is why I tend to avoid declaring methods private. I know these newsletters have tended toward long, but 3100+ words was a bit much even for me, so I’ve split it in half.

Conway’s Law

If your organization has coders continually getting in each other’s way, or if you make a change to part of your code base and don’t know who needs to review it, or if you have code that nobody maintains because everybody owns it… you may be violating Conway’s Law. Hi – I thought I’d do something a little different this time. We’ll be back to more Better Know Ruby things next time, but I’ve been sitting on this essay for a while and wanted it to get out.

The Big Book Post for 2023

This is late even by my absurd standards for having this post be late. I have a good excuse – I got on to TikTok. And not that I wasted a bunch of time on TikTok, but that I started to see a lot of BookTok videos, where a lot of very earnest people would talk about their 5-star-books for November or whatever. And I thought, “Do I sound like that?

Better Know A Ruby Thing #5: Block Arguments

Previously in what what I guess is now “The Argument Trilogy”, we talked about: Positional Arguments Keyword Arguments And now the trilogy now comes to its inevitable conclusion with “Return of The Jedi” block arguments. In the interest of keeping this thing within the plausible word count of a newsletter, we’re not going to talk about what blocks are or the way blocks behave here, that’ll be a future Better Know, but we do need to talk about block syntax.

Better Know A Ruby Thing #4: Keyword Arguments

Last time on Better Know A Ruby Thing, we covered positional arguments, and now we’re going to move on to keyword arguments. I really did think this was going to be shorter than the last one, and then I got to the conversion between keyword and positional arguments, and then… well, it’s not shorter. (I know I said the next newsletter was going to be Conway’s Law, that’s coming, but this one moved along faster…)

Better Know A Ruby Thing #3: Positional Arguments

Ruby has three ways to pass information from a method call to a method definition: positional arguments, keyword arguments, and block arguments. Each of these ways has: A syntax to declare an argument of that type in a method definition A syntax to declare an argument of that type in a method call A class that can can be used to convert arbitrary objects into and out of method calls A text marker that is associated with that kind of argument, *, **, or &.

The Pickaxe is out and I am Happy

I am extremely excited to say that Programming Ruby 3.3, also known as The Pickaxe Book, is now done done, finished, completely available as an ebook, and winding its way to distributors to ship to people as a genuine physical book. The PDF and ePub versions of the book are available at Pragmatic’s website. The print book should be available wherever you get print books, including Amazon and Bookshop. I’ve talked in the past about what’s in the book, what’s new, and whether you should buy it.

Copyright 2024 Noel Rappin

All opinions and thoughts expressed or shared in this article or post are my own and are independent of and should not be attributed to my current employer, Chime Financial, Inc., or its subsidiaries.