Why's (poignant) Guide to Ruby, sometimes called W(p)GtR or just "the poignant guide", is an introductory book to the Ruby programming language, written by why the lucky stiff. The book is distributed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license.
The book is unusual among programming books that it includes quite a lot of strange humor and narrative side tracks that don't necessarily have anything to do with the topic. As a result, many bits of the book have become inside jokes in the Ruby community such as references to the words chunky bacon. The book includes many characters which have become popular too, particularly the cartoon foxes and Trady Blix, a large black cat who is a friend of _why and guides the foxes through the weird world in which they find themselves (and occasionally teaches them some Ruby).
The book itself is incomplete and new chapters appear from time to time.
- About this book
- Kon'nichi wa, Ruby
- A Quick (and Hopefully Painless) Ride Through Ruby (with Cartoon Foxes) - basic introduction to central Ruby concepts
- Floating Little Leaves of Code - evaluation and values, hashes and lists
- Them What Make the Rules and Them What Live the Dream - case/when, while/until, variable scope, blocks, methods, class definitions, class attributes, objects, modules, introspection in irb, dup, self, rbconfig module
- Downtown - metaprogramming
- When You Wish Upon a Beard - send method, new methods in existing classes
- Heaven’s Harp
The following chapters are "Expansion Paks":
- The Tiger’s Vest (with a Basic Introduction to Irb) - discusses irb, the interactive Ruby interpreter.