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The Ruby Programming Language by David Flanagan, Yukihiro Matsumoto

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Preface

This book is an updated and expanded version of Ruby in a Nutshell (O’Reilly) by Yukihiro Matsumoto, who is better known as Matz. It is loosely modeled after the classic The C Programming Language (Prentice Hall) by Brian Kernighan and Dennis Ritchie, and aims to document the Ruby language comprehensively but without the formality of a language specification. It is written for experienced programmers who are new to Ruby, and for current Ruby programmers who want to take their understanding and mastery of the language to the next level.

You’ll find a guide to the structure and organization of this book in Chapter 1.

Acknowledgments

David Flanagan

Before anything else, I must thank Matz for the beautiful language he has designed, for his help understanding that language, and for the Nutshell that this book grew out of.

Thanks also to:

  • why the lucky stiff for the delightful drawings that grace these pages (you’ll find them on the chapter title pages) and, of course, for his own book on Ruby, why’s (poignant) guide to Ruby, which you can find online at http://poignantguide.net/ruby/.

  • My technical reviewers: David A. Black, director of Ruby Power and Light, LLC (http://www.rubypal.com); Charles Oliver Nutter of the JRuby team (http://www.jruby.org) at Sun Microsystems; Shyouhei Urabe, the maintainer of the Ruby 1.8.6 branch; and Ken Cooper. Their comments helped improve the quality and clarity of the book. Any errors that remain are, of course, my own.

  • My editor, Mike Loukides, for asking and persistently encouraging me to write this book, and for his patience while I did so.

Finally, of course, my love and thanks to my family.

—David Flanagan

http://www.davidflanagan.com

January 2008

Yukihiro Matsumoto

In addition to the people listed by David (except myself), I appreciate the help from community members all around the world, especially from Japan: Koichi Sasada, Nobuyoshi Nakada, Akira Tanaka, Shugo Maeda, Usaku Nakamura, and Shyouhei Urabe to name a few (not in any particular order).

And finally, I thank my family, who hopefully forgive their husband and father for dedicating time to Ruby development.

—Yukihiro Matsumoto

January 2008

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