Agile Web Development with Rails: A Pragmatic Guide

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Overview

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 database tables. No more painful object-relational mapping. Just create your business objects and let Rails do the ...

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Overview

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 database tables. No more painful object-relational mapping. Just create your business objects and let Rails do the rest. You'll learn how to use the Action Pack framework to route incoming requests and render pages using easy-to-write templates and components. See how to exploit the Rails service frameworks to send emails, implement web services, and create dynamic, user-centric web-pages using built-in Javascript and Ajax support. There are extensive chapters on testing, deployment, and scaling.

You'll see how easy it is to install Rails using your web server of choice (such as Apache or lighttpd) or using its own included web server. You'll be writing applications that work with your favorite database (MySQL, Oracle, Postgres, and more) in no time at all.

You'll create a complete online store application in the extended tutorial section, so you'll see how a full Rails application is developed---iteratively and rapidly.

Rails strives to honor the Pragmatic Programmer's "DRY Principle" by avoiding the extra work of configuration files and code annotations. You can develop in real-time: make a change, and watch it work immediately.

Forget XML. Everything in Rails, from templates to control flow to business logic, is written in Ruby, the language of choice for programmers who like to get the job done well (and leave work on time for a change).

Rails is the framework of choice for the new generation of Web 2.0 developers. Agile Web Development with Rails is the book for that generation, written by Dave Thomas (Pragmatic Programmer and author of Programming Ruby) and David Heinemeier Hansson, who created Rails.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780976694007
  • Publisher: Pragmatic Bookshelf
  • Publication date: 7/28/2005
  • Series: Pragmatic Programmers Series
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 450
  • Product dimensions: 7.50 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.05 (d)

Meet the Author

Dave Thomas, as one of the authors of the Agile Manifesto, understands agility. As the author of "Programming Ruby," he understands Ruby. And, as an active Rails developer, he knows Rails.

David Heinemeier Hansson is the creator of the Rails framework.

Clark is a consultant, author, speaker, and programmer. He helps teams build better software faster through his company, Clarkware Consulting, Inc.

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Table of Contents

1 Introduction 1
2 The architecture of rails applications 11
3 Installing rails 21
4 Instant gratification 27
5 The depot application 47
6 Task A : product maintenance 53
7 Task B : catalog display 71
8 Task C : cart creation 79
9 Task D : checkout! 101
10 Task E : shipping 115
11 Task F : administrivia 125
12 Task T : testing 139
13 Rails in depth 181
14 Active record basics 199
15 More active record 253
16 Action controller and rails 289
17 Action view 339
18 The Web, V2.0 385
19 Action mailer 411
20 Web services on rails 423
21 Securing your rails application 439
22 Deployment and scaling 453
A Introduction to Ruby 481
B Configuration parameters 497
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 4, 2006

    The onyl tech book I've ever used cover to cover

    In all my years of reading, using and reviewing technical books, this is the first title I've read cover to cover, and in so doing actually built the sample application from start to finish. Most other books use a series of disconnected This book was my first foray months ago into the beautiful world of Rails development, and continues to function as the crowned jewel in my reference library anytime I have a question about Rails or Ruby. The developer that gets the most out of Ruby on Rails is the experienced programmer with a diverse background (expertise in some programming language, database/SQL experience, server administration, etc.). This is the crowd that will appreciate the rapid development features of Rails, abstracting away many of the tedious tasks necessary to build stable, scalable, secure web applications, with a fraction of the code. Dave Thomas pens a classic tutorial on building a practical e-commerce app, applicable in several diverse scenarios, and certainly helpful in its design of leveraging the capabilities of the web framework. There's also insightful contributions by Rails creator David Heinemeier Hanson, which helps for some of the more niche concerns experienced developer have likening Rails to platforms they may be more familiar with. Each chapter is fairly succinct, teaching proper Rails software design, coding conventions, and incorporating OOP principles. The book is essentially presented in three parts: building the sample app learning best practices development on Rails and a healthy collection of appendices that introduce Ruby syntax. While I didn't necessarily agree with the book's organization at first glance, it does make sense when you realize just how easy it is to setup powerful, automated systems with Rails learning in such a fashion. You'll get up and running with the easy stuff and then move onto the more advanced topics. In criticism, I would have liked to see a more robust appendix of Ruby and Rails APIs (at least documenting some of the more popular properties, method and events), as well as a cheat sheet for the common command-line syntax used in setting up apps. I would also have liked to see a little more documentation about using databases other than MySQL, and perhaps a tad more of a discussion on MVC architecture, at least academically. It would have also been nice to dive a little deeper into working with e-mail and some of the more advanced XML features with Rails. True to the framework which is represents, the book does move at a frenetic pace. But that aside, this is the best, easiest way to learn Ruby on Rails. This will be the best investment you've ever made into open source technologies.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 26, 2006

    Agile Development made easy

    I've played with web development in PHP, and though I enjoy it, the time required to develop the structure and functionality of a website takes a while. After hearing a presentation on Ruby on Rails, I decided that I would check it out. After perusing many websites, I found it to be very quick in developing the structure, but I had minor trouble with the functionality, mainly because of my unfamiliarity with Ruby. After acquiring experience with Ruby, this book is a great way to understand the Rails methodology. Don't expect it to teach you Ruby, though the main focus of the book is the Rails framework and the Agile development process. Be ready to invest in a good Ruby reference along with purchasing this.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 9, 2005

    RIGHT ON 'TRACK'

    Are you easily adaptable to change when it comes to your web applications? If you are, this book is for you. Authors Dave Thomas, David Hansson, Leon Breedt, Mike Clark, Thomas Fuchs and Andrea Schwarz, have written an outstanding tutorial and a detailed guide to Rails. Thomas, Hansson, Breedt, Clark, Fuchs and Schwarz, begin by discussing why Rails imposes some fairly serious constraints on how you structure your web applications and, how these constraints make it easier to create applications. Next, the authors show you how to install Rails, Windows, OS X, and Linux. Then, you'll get a glimpse of the Rails applications work. The authors continue by showing you how to create simple maintenance pages, link database tables, handle sessions, and create forms. In addition, you'll also learn how to create the web interface that lets you maintain your product information--create new products, edit existing products, delete unwanted ones, and so on. The authors also focus on how to create a simple catalog display. Next, you'll learn how to implement the shopping cart functionality. Then, the authors show you how to implement the checkout function. They continue by showing you how to fulfill orders. In addition, the authors also cover how to access the administrative functions. The authors also show you how to write automated tests for the application you all know and love--the Depot application. Next, they discuss all of the high-level stuff you need to know to understand the rest, like: directory structures, configuration, environments, support classes, and debugging hints. Then the authors look at the basics of Active Record--connecting to databases, mapping tables, and manipulating data. They continue by looking at ActionController and how it works within Rails. The authors also show you how the Action-View module encapsulates all the functionality needed to render templates, most commonly generating HTML or XML back to the user. Next, they discuss the Web, version 2.0. Then, you'll learn all about Action Mailer, which is a simple Rails component that allows your applications to send and receive e-mail. The authors continue by discussing how AWS is structured. In addition, you'll also learn how to secure your Rails application. Finally, the authors examine options that need to be tweaked and the software that needs to be injected as the development setting is replaced by the production setting. This book isn't a reference manual for Rails. What it is, is an excellent book about how to use Rails modules and most of their methods, either by example or narratively in the text.

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