I want to give a quick plug to O’Reilly’s Rails Cookbook by Rob Orsini. A lot of the time when trying to figure out a coding problem, I rely on google searches. Some reference books are so good that if I have a problem, I learn to go to the book first before doing a google search. The best example for me is the Pragmatic Version Control book by Mike Mason. When I have a SVN problem, I go to that book.
The Rails Cookbook has not become the first source for rails programming as has Pragmatic Version Control, but I’ve turned to it a number of times when google searches have not yielded the results I needed.
The strong point of the Rails Cookbook is its breadth. It provides a lot of examples. Two that I found very helpful were 3.17 on acts_as_tree and 6.3 on modeling relationships restfully with join models. Both these examples crystallized the solution faster for me than any found blog posts or discussion items. I’m sure there will be more examples like that.
Rails Cookbook does not go into as much depth of explanation as the recipes in Rails Recipes by Chad Fowler. But that is okay. There are more of them and most of the time I’m not reading the explanations as much as looking for code samples. In that way, Rails Cookbook is great.
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