Interview: Author Steve Pugh

by Satish Talim on April 17, 2009

Our first ever Book Promotion: “Wicked Cool Ruby Scripts” starts soon. Win one of four books to be given out for participation. The coolest thing? Author Steve Pugh will be on site to answer questions! Click here for more details. Here, in this brief interview, Satish Talim of RubyLearning talks to Steve Pugh.

Wicked Cool Ruby Scripts

Satish>> Steve, could you tell us something about yourself – your background, where you are based?

Steve>> I’m from the United States, have a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from Valdosta State University, and a Master of Management degree from the University of Phoenix. Additionally, I’m a Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) and a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP). I have a strong passion for programming, which I have been doing since high school. Aside from that, I’m into information security, photography, and working out with CrossFit.

Satish>> Your book “Wicked Cool Ruby Scripts” – what is it about?

Steve>>Wicked Cool Ruby Scripts” is a book about using Ruby at the tactical level and in real world scenarios. The book will take the reader on a journey of thinking about Ruby’s applications. The idea was to compel readers to think about applying Ruby to solve problems they may face. I’ve noticed people I interact with doing repetitive tasks that could easily be scripted in Ruby. Ruby is powerful, and I feel that the language has been overshadowed by the Rails framework–almost to its detriment. This book is about Ruby, specifically. So, to that end, the book took a collection of scripts and dissected them. Each script was analyzed, specific points of interest were identified, and then the reader was asked to build upon the script, thus personalizing it.

Satish>> Who is the book targeted at?

Steve>> The book is targeted at people who know the basics of Ruby, have written “Hello World” programs, have played with str.downcase, and are curious about what’s next. The scripts are a nice reference for any Rubyist. I see this book as my contribution to the mosaic of our Ruby Common Body of Knowledge.

Satish>> Since you have a collection of scripts, how is your book different from a Ruby Cookbook?

Steve>> I didn’t want to recreate a ‘cookbook’, which traditionally tend to be script-after-script-after-script. If you’ll notice, the book’s progression is intentional, each chapter touching on a slightly more complex script or revisiting other scripts from a different perspective. The focus of “Wicked Cool Ruby Scripts” is on learning some more advanced Ruby uses rather than strictly being a reference manual. I was happy with the book’s trajectory, and the feedback we’ve received reinforces that.

Satish>> What’s been your experience with the publisher – No Starch
Press?

Steve>> No Starch Press is great. Tyler, Bill, Megan, and the rest of the crew in San Francisco are fantastic. They took care of so many tasks which allowed me to focus on just writing the book. I would highly recommend that anyone considering writing a techie book give No Starch a call. I’m open to helping those would-be authors draft proposals or develop ideas.

Satish>> Anything else you would like to add?

Steve>> I appreciate Satish hosting this interview and allowing me the opportunity to interact with the RubyLearning community.

Thank you Steve. In case you have any queries and/or questions, kindly post your questions here (as comments to this blog post) and Steve would be glad to answer.

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Posted by Satish Talim

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Arun April 25, 2009 at 3:55 pm

Nice interview…

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