Python vs Ruby

Tom Anderson twic at
Fri Oct 21 00:21:59 CEST 2005

On Thu, 20 Oct 2005, Amol Vaidya wrote:

> "Casey Hawthorne" <caseyhHAMMER_TIME at> wrote in message
> news:02efl19c4n4994vtlt2ubrs7ulg4mcm8ug at
>> What languages do you know already? What computer science concepts do 
>> you know? What computer programming concepts do you know? Have you 
>> heard of Scheme?

Good questions!

>> Ruby is a bit Perl like -- so if you like Perl, chances are you might 
>> like Ruby.

I don't think rubyists would appreciate that description. Ruby may be 
heavier on the funky symbols than python, but it's a very clean, elegant, 
usable, well-thought-out and deeply object-oriented language - in other 
words, nothing at all like perl.

>> Python is more like Java.

Python is *nothing* like java.

>> I have heard, but have not been able to verify that if a program is
>> about
>> 10,000 lines in C++
>> it is about
>> 5,000 lines in Java
>> and it is about
>> 3,000 lines in Python (Ruby to?)

ITYM 300. Yes, ruby too.

> I've done a lot of studying on my own, and taken the classes that my 
> high-school offers. I feel that I have a fairly good understanding of 
> Java, and basic OO concepts due to that. I've created some semi-complex 
> programs in java, in my opinion, such as networked checkers, 8-player 
> blackjack, a space-shooter type game, a copy of mario (one level, 
> anyway), and some other stuff. I've also done a bit of studying on C. 
> I've done a few projects in C, including another space-shooter type of 
> game using SDL, an IRC client and some simple database-type programs. I 
> also gave a shot at assembly using NASM for x86 before, but didn't get 
> too far. I wrote some trivial code -- wrote to the video buffer, played 
> with some bios interrupts, stuff like that. The only thing I did in 
> assembly was create a program that loads at boot-up, and loads another 
> program that just reiterates whatever you type in. I only did that 
> because I was curious. That's about as far as my programming 
> knowledge/experience goes.

An excellent start!

> Well, I'm not sure what you mean by programming concepts. I'm familiar 
> with OO through Java, and procedural programming through C. I'd be more 
> detailed, but I'm not exactly sure what you are asking. Sorry.

I think i know what Casey means, but i don't know if i can explain it any 
better. Do you understand the concept orthogonality? The Once And Only 
Once principle? Have you ever heard of design patterns?

> I have no idea what Scheme is, but I'll cettainly look it up as soon as 
> I'm done writing this.

You won't like it. Give yourself another 5-10 years, and you might start 
to find it strangely intriguing.

> I've never given Perl a shot. It was another language I considered 
> learning, but my father's friend told me to go with Python or Ruby.

Your father has good friends.

> Thanks for your help. Hopefully I wasn't too lengthy in this post.

Lengthy is fine!

Anyway, the upshot of all this is that, yes, you should learn python. 
Python is dope!



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