Bastards Book of Ruby has a Hacker News revival

Bastards Book HN spike

The Hacker News traffic spike for the Bastards Book of Ruby

I’ve procrastinated in updating my book of practical Ruby coding. But the site got an unexpected boost in interest and traffic when someone posted it to Hacker News this past week, possibly in response to the “Please Don’t Learn to Code” debate started by Jeff Atwood.

Sidenote: The Bastards Book did reach the front page when I submitted its introductory essay, aptly titled “Programming is for Anyone.” That sprawling essay needs to be revised but I believe it in even more.

The HN posting reached the top, something I couldn’t get it to do back when I originally posted the draft. It was encouraging to see the need for something like this out there and makes me want to jump back into this as a summer project. I’ve definitely thought of many more examples to include and have hopefully become a better writer.

The main “fix” will be moving it from my totally-overkill Ruby-on-Rails system, structuring the book’s handmade HTML code into something simple enough for Markdown, and pushing it to Github. I’ve since gotten familiar with Jekyll, which is mostly painless with the jekyll-bootstrap gem.

I'm a programmer, data journalist, and photographer in New York City. I'm the author of three in-progress books: The Bastards Books of Ruby, Photography, and Regular Expressions.