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5 Chapters of O’Reilly’s Ruby Best Practices – Free!

By Peter Cooper / February 23, 2010

rbp.pngRuby Best Practices is a book by Gregory Brown (and published by O'Reilly) that looks into the "Ruby way" of doing things in the Ruby language and, specifically, why Rubyists tend to write Ruby the way they do. It's an engaging book and we took a look at it and interviewed Gregory Brown about it just over a year ago.

Gregory always wanted to be able to give away his book with a Creative Commons license eventually and O'Reilly have kindly allowed him to start doing that, a chapter at a time. So far, the first five chapters are available to download at GitHub (in PDF format). Specifically:

However, it's not just a free for all! If you read these chapters, Gregory (the primary author of the book) implores you to comment and offer any advice or insights you might have on the relevant posts on the RBP blog.. he also suggests that if you really like it, you should buy a copy of the book somehow, if only to convince O'Reilly that this publishing model is a "Good Thing." Gregory claims that the book hasn't even made its advance back yet (how!?), which makes this gesture all the better.

To buy a copy, head over to O'Reilly for e-book and print copies or go to your usual bookselling site ( are probably the cheapest as usual).

Kudos to Gregory and O'Reilly for this move.


  1. Gregory Brown says:

    Hi Peter,

    Thanks for mentioning RBP again!

    The book has sold well (above average) as an ebook, but isn't having stellar print sales. Unfortunately, with the flood of Ruby books (especially from O'Reilly) over the years, it's not surprising to see a first edition book printed in 2009 having a hard time selling copies. I guess the world is just shifting more towards digital books.

    That said... RBP is a book meant to be scribbled on, or at least a book destined to have beverages spilled on it. The reader should be hacking on code as while reading through it. That'll probably break your damn kindle, so when you think of it that way, the paper book is a good deal afterall. :)

  2. Gregory Brown says:

    Also, those looking to be reminded when new chapters come up can follow @rubypractices on twitter.

  3. Jonty Davis says:

    Thanks very much for this offer - I am trying hard to use tests and improve my coding -so these free chapters are a great start. If i ever get any income (4 sites in preparation for friends) I will gladly buy the book!

  4. Gavin Todes says:

    I'm reading Chapter 2 right now and cracked up at this example:

    >> story2(animal: "Kitteh", person: "Joe Frasier")
    => "Joe Frasier went to town, riding on a Kitteh"

    Anyways, RBP is great stuff, thanks!

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