I mentioned this in response to another message (I wish the mailing
list would produce correct message threading), but would like to point
it out in an extra message:

There already is an excellent book for beginners: Mark Slagell's
"Teach yourself Ruby in 21 days". The title of the book is a definite
turn-off, but the content is, in my opinion as "newbie" to both Ruby
and programming (unless you count being fluent in various Basic
dialects 10+ years ago), very valuable to a beginner. The author
introduces Ruby, OO and programming concepts gently and the learning
curve is fairly mild (at least in the first few chapters).

Those who work on an online book for beginners (I understand that this
is the goal? Or is it going to be a printed book?) might want to
glance at Mark's work. It is probably boring for experienced
programmers, but from my perspective as novice it has been an
incredible help and I doubt I would have put effort into learning Ruby
without this book (because I simply wouldn't have known where and how
to start).

-M.
--
To e-mail: use the initials of my name and add "at felinism dot com".