Sam Ruby:I think I prefer Ruby 1.8’s non-support for Unicode over Ruby 1.9’s "support".
David Flanagan:I don’t know anything about the rexml library...I don’t understand why Matz made some of the choices he did, but they seem to work okay...I attempt to explain all this in The Ruby Programming Language which should be in bookstores in about a month...
(From Sam Ruby's blog.)
What happened to O'Reilly? They used to brag about how they would give you the straight dope even if it meant criticizing the people who invented the technology. Now they're telling us that they don't know why the creator did something, but since that person is the creator, it must ipso facto be the right thing to do.
The upcoming book has Matz as a co-author and _why as an illustrator, but honestly, this is a language made famous by opinionated software - having no opinion about its direction and evolution isn't just weak, vague, and noncommittal, it goes against the culture. And writing a book about Ruby without knowing anything about REXML is just silly. More to the point, writing a book about Ruby without learning its standard library is ridiculous.With so many books coming out of the Ruby community right now, O'Reilly could have found somebody who knew something about REXML, or indeed, someone with a background in the language, or at least someone with an opinion about it.
Anyway. If you're at home programming and blogging at 11pm on a Friday, you sure as hell don't want a copy of Flanagan's upcoming book, but you may like this one instead:
Parsing, writing a Lisp interpreter, generating MIDI in real time - this book is the shit.