Ruby: A Jewel In Your List of Programming Languages

First released in 1995, Ruby is a general-purpose programming language created by Yukihiro “Matz” Matsumoto. Matz wanted something that was both simple enough for beginners to pick up quickly and powerful enough for experts to find useful.

To achieve this, he combined elements from other programming languages he admired, including Perl, Lisp, Ada, Eiffel, and Smalltalk.

What is Ruby?

Ruby is an object-oriented language, and ­– unlike other object-oriented languages — everything is an object. This means that every piece of information can be given its own actions and properties. For example, in Ruby you can apply an action to an integer; this is not possible in most other object-oriented languages.

This makes it easier to use and understand object-oriented programming because rules applying to objects apply to every part of Ruby, no exceptions.

Ruby on Rails

Most of the time when you read about Ruby you’ll see the phrase “Ruby on Rails.” Rails is a highly-popular full-stack web framework written in and for Ruby. By using Rails, Ruby developers can structure their code and simplify repetitive tasks; this enables them to build web applications much faster.

Rails is one of the most popular web development frameworks around, which has had a big effect on the popularity of Ruby. Using Rails, prototypes can be written and tested quickly, speeding up the development cycle and supporting Agile development. Ruby has been used to help create many famous websites, including the original Twitter build, eCommerce solution Shopify, and GitHub.

Of course, Rails isn’t the only framework available for Ruby — it’s just the most popular. If you become an experienced Ruby developer, you might also learn frameworks such as Sinatra, Volt, or Lotus.

Powerful and Flexible

Although most Ruby programmers do learn and use Rails, Ruby is still a powerful general-purpose programming language by itself and can be used for far more than just web development.

Vanilla Ruby is a very flexible language; you can alter, remove, redefine and add to any part of it. For example, normally you’d use a ‘-‘ sign for subtraction. But what if you’d rather use the word ‘minus’ to make your code easier to read and write? That’s simple — you can add the new method to the numeric class with just a few lines of code.

Designed for Usability

When designing Ruby, Matz aimed to achieve the ‘principle of least astonishment,’ which means that when you learn something new, you should not be surprised by how it works. In other words, it just makes sense.

Ruby is a high-level language, which means it reads as close to ‘normal’ English as possible; the user is as far removed from unfriendly computer terms. Compared to other programming languages, Ruby has a lot less clutter and jargon; everything has been written to be as simple and as clear as possible.

Ruby Job Opportunities

According to the Stack Overflow Developer Survey Ruby is the 11th most popular technology for developers, with 8.9% of those surveyed using it. That might sound low, but it still means that there are thousands of jobs available each month.

Globally, there are approximately 2,800 jobs advertised each month, with an average salary of almost $90,000. Of these, approximately 1,100 are advertised as Ruby on Rails.

Narrowing down to the US, there are approximately 1,200 jobs advertised each month, with a competitive average salary of almost $105,000. Of these, about 500 are advertised as Ruby on Rails.

How Can You Learn Ruby with SoloLearn?

Ruby might be easier to learn than some other programming languages, but that doesn’t mean you want to learn alone. Like millions of other learners, you can use the SoloLearn app to make learning faster and more fun.

When you join the SoloLearn Ruby course, you’ll be joining more than 170,000 other learners who’ve used the 57 lessons and 172 quizzes to advance their learning. Split into seven modules, the course consists of:

· Module 1: Basic Concepts

· Module 2: Control Structures

· Module 3: Collections

· Module 4: Methods

· Module 5: Object Oriented Programming

· Module 6: Modules, Mixins, Standard Classes

· Module 7: Working with Files

Ready to start learning Ruby? Download the SoloLearn App today!

…and before you go

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Ruby: A Jewel In Your List of Programming Languages was originally published in SoloLearn on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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