Learning

Ditch Your Books after Half an Hour (Ruby Under A Microscope)

Should you fight through books or keep them most relevant to your current situation?
Ditch Your Books after Half an Hour (Ruby Under A Microscope)
In: Learning

Ruby Under the Microscope. I had this book for 3 years on my list. It probably drained some of my mental energy, cause I wanted to read it and devour it. It had a lot of promises they I resonated with:

  • understand the ruby programming language on a deeper level
  • dig very deep into the ruby internals and pick up some computer science on the way
  • sniff some C
  • learn from and about technical illustrations

The time finally came. I just finished a book that I devoured (Sustainable Web Development with Ruby on Rails by David Copeland). And I was pumped about the next, this golden piece that was on my list for so long.

After reading some of the first chapters I realized that I wasn't excited about the book. It had some nice fun facts which I happily added to my developer trivia database.

But other than that, I discovered that in comparison to the last book there was a loud inner voice that asked:

  • What's the point?
  • What will you take away from here?
  • How will you apply this in your side projects or at work?
  • Can you create some nice content around it?

Seemed like I didn't have nice answers for it. So I ditched it (for now).


Reading is pretty cool. It lets you tap into the experiences of other people without needing to make the experiences and mistakes yourself. But just tapping into their experiences doesn't mean deep learning. The most fun and effective reading require you to follow up on what you have read and make your own experiences and mistakes.

If the material that you are reading is not (yet) actionable for you, feel free to ditch it. Let it breed for another year. Or forever. And get onto the next adventure tapping into other authors' brains where you feel excited about every line you need.

P.S.: It's a well-written and interesting book. I've learned quite a bit in that short amount of time, there is a tiny post coming up about it in the next few days.

Written by
Rich Steinmetz
Always exploring how we developers can code, learn, communicate and create APIs with more fun. Love to chat about Productocracy. Emoji heavy-user 🤪 And much more but the limit here's 200 chars.
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