hi Mathew,

> How I should I begin?

  think of something you want to make...

> How did you start?

  i wanted to make an audio player that suited MY needs...

> What was the biggest problem you've ran into?

  it wasn't easy.  i began with next to no programming experience...

> What is the point of Ruby?

  i believe that the point of Ruby is beauty and eloquence.  think of 
something you really want to do, and then begin to find ways to do it - 
otherwise it's all meaningless.  maybe you want to make a baseball 
scorecard, an army of starmonkeys, or a peanut parer.  it doesn't 
matter...  the thing is that without a goal in mind nothing will sink 
in.

  start simple.  at first, think of some inane goals to achieve, and 
reach them - you won't believe how satisfying it is.  make a program 
that prints the lyrics to '99 bottles of beer on the wall' or one that 
converts numbers represented in base 10 to numbers represented in base 
5, 16, or balanced ternary.

  fool around and have fun - i think that might really be the 'point' of 
Ruby....


  if you haven't already, check these out:

my personal favorite, and what really got me going with ruby, the 
'poignant guide' : http://mislav.uniqpath.com/poignant-guide/

the 'pragmatic guide' was also very helpful for me: 
http://ruby-doc.org/docs/ProgrammingRuby/

  there are many more good tutorials and manuals, just look around...

  good luck, have fun!

  - j

  - j

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