Programming Books

20 Recommended Free Books to Learn about Ruby

Last Updated on May 22, 2022

6. Programming Ruby – The Pragmatic Programmer’s Guide by David Thomas & Andrew Hunt


No roundup of free Ruby books would be complete without including Programming Ruby – The Pragmatic Programmer’s Guide. It’s the original tome and complete reference for Ruby.

The book offers an excellent tutorial on using Ruby. It offers detailed documentation on built-in classes, modules and methods. And there’s complete complete of Ruby’s standard libraries.

The material is distributed under the terms of the Open Publication License.

Read the book

7. The Little Book of Ruby by Huw Collingbourne

The-Little-Book-of-RubyThe Little Book Of Ruby is a PDF eBook which will guide you through the fundamentals of Ruby programming.

Starting with the basics (strings, numbers, objects and methods) it quickly moves on to explain all you need to know to create your own class hierarchies, use arrays, hashes, iterators, modules, mixins and much more.

Read the book

8. why’s (poignant) Guide to Ruby by why the lucky stiff

Whys-Poignant-Guide-Rubywhy’s (poignant) Guide to Ruby is an unconventional but interesting open source book that will teach you Ruby through stories, wit, and comics. The material is pitched at an introductory level.

There’s lots of bizarre humor and narrative side tracks.

Originally created by why the lucky stiff, this guide remains a classic for Ruby learners. But it’ll be an acquired taste for many.

It’s an actively maintained fork of the original publication.

Read the book

9. Kestrels, Quirky Birds, and Hopeless Egocentricity by Reg “raganwald” Braithwaite

Kestrels-Quirky-Birds-Hopeless-EgocentricityThis book is made out of nearly 100% recycled blog posts.

It collects Reg “Raganwald” Braithwaite’s  series of essays about Combinatory Logic, Method Combinators, and Ruby Meta-Programing into a convenient and inexpensive e-book.

The book has a suggested price of $7.99 but it’s available to download for free.

And more importantly it’s published under the MIT License, so it’s open source goodness.

Read the book

10. Ruby Programming by


Ruby Programming teaches you how to install and begin using Ruby. Getting into the meat of the book in the Basic Ruby section, you’ll learn the main features of Ruby’s syntax. There’s reference material too.

There’s also some coverage of slightly more advanced topics with in-depth tutorials including unit testing, building C extensions, and embedding Ruby within a C program.

Read the book

Next page: Page 3 – Learn to Program and more books

Pages in this article:
Page 1 – My Strongest Recommendations
Page 2 – Programming Ruby – The Pragmatic Programmer’s Guide and more books
Page 3 – Learn to Program and more books
Page 4 – Developing Games With Ruby and more books

All books in this series:

Free Programming Books
AdaALGOL-like programming language, extended from Pascal and other languages
AgdaDependently typed functional language based on intuitionistic Type Theory
ArduinoInexpensive, flexible, open source microcontroller platform
AssemblyAs close to writing machine code without writing in pure hexadecimal
AwkVersatile language designed for pattern scanning and processing language
BashShell and command language; popular both as a shell and a scripting language
BASICBeginner’s All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code
CGeneral-purpose, procedural, portable, high-level language
C++General-purpose, portable, free-form, multi-paradigm language
C#Combines the power and flexibility of C++ with the simplicity of Visual Basic
ClojureDialect of the Lisp programming language
ClojureScriptCompiler for Clojure that targets JavaScript
COBOLCommon Business-Oriented Language
CoffeeScriptTranscompiles into JavaScript inspired by Ruby, Python and Haskell
CoqDependently typed language similar to Agda, Idris, F* and others
CrystalGeneral-purpose, concurrent, multi-paradigm, object-oriented language
CSSCSS (Cascading Style Sheets) specifies a web page’s appearance
DGeneral-purpose systems programming language with a C-like syntax
DartClient-optimized language for fast apps on multiple platforms
DylanMulti-paradigm language supporting functional and object-oriented coding
ECMAScriptBest known as the language embedded in web browsers
EiffelObject-oriented language designed by Bertrand Meyer
ElixirRelatively new functional language running on the Erlang virtual machine
ErlangGeneral-purpose, concurrent, declarative, functional language
F#Uses functional, imperative, and object-oriented programming methods
FactorDynamic stack-based programming language
ForthImperative stack-based programming language
FortranThe first high-level language, using the first compiler
GoCompiled, statically typed programming language
GroovyPowerful, optionally typed and dynamic language
HaskellStandardized, general-purpose, polymorphically, statically typed language
HTMLHyperText Markup Language
IconWide variety of features for processing and presenting symbolic data
JArray programming language based primarily on APL
JavaGeneral-purpose, concurrent, class-based, object-oriented, high-level language
JavaScriptInterpreted, prototype-based, scripting language
JuliaHigh-level, high-performance language for technical computing
KotlinMore modern version of Java
LabVIEWDesigned to enable domain experts to build power systems quickly
LaTeXProfessional document preparation system and document markup language
LispUnique features - excellent to study programming constructs
LogoDialect of Lisp that features interactivity, modularity, extensibility
LuaDesigned as an embeddable scripting language
MarkdownPlain text formatting syntax designed to be easy-to-read and easy-to-write
Objective-CObject-oriented language that adds Smalltalk-style messaging to C
OCamlThe main implementation of the Caml language
PascalImperative and procedural language designed in the late 1960s
PerlHigh-level, general-purpose, interpreted, scripting, dynamic language
PHPPHP has been at the helm of the web for many years
PostScriptInterpreted, stack-based and Turing complete language
PrologA general purpose, declarative, logic programming language
PureScriptSmall strongly, statically typed language compiling to JavaScript
PythonGeneral-purpose, structured, powerful language
QMLHierarchical declarative language for user interface layout - JSON-like syntax
RDe facto standard among statisticians and data analysts
RacketGeneral-purpose, object-oriented, multi-paradigm, functional language
RakuMember of the Perl family of programming languages
RubyGeneral purpose, scripting, structured, flexible, fully object-oriented language
RustIdeal for systems, embedded, and other performance critical code
ScalaModern, object-functional, multi-paradigm, Java-based language
SchemeA general-purpose, functional language descended from Lisp and Algol
ScratchVisual programming language designed for 8-16 year-old children
SQLAccess and manipulate data held in a relational database management system
Standard MLGeneral-purpose functional language characterized as "Lisp with types"
SwiftPowerful and intuitive general-purpose programming language
TclDynamic language based on concepts of Lisp, C, and Unix shells
TeXMarkup and programming language - create professional quality typeset text
TypeScriptStrict syntactical superset of JavaScript adding optional static typing
ValaObject-oriented language, syntactically similar to C#
VHDLHardware description language used in electronic design automation
VimLPowerful scripting language of the Vim editor
XMLRules for defining semantic tags describing structure ad meaning
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