Getting Started With Git

I have been using Git for years now and I am still a novice user. Actually, if you are an individual developer or work in a really small team, you don’t really need to go beyond using the basic stuff like cloning a repo, committing code, branching and pushing back to the origin repo. And that’s exactly what happened with me. Working alone most of the times and working in my own repos. I never felt the need to explore advanced usage.

Last week, we didn’t have internet at home for like four days. So, I thought I’ll read a book. I downloaded ProGit : The Free Git Book and started reading. It’s an awesomely written book. I learned a lot of new things about Git. A few more concept about using branches efficiently. If you are a Git beginner or looking forward to getting started with Git and you don’t like reading too much, I’ll suggest that you read at least first three chapters thoroughly. That along with a free GitHub account should be enough to get you going if you are not going to be a heavy Git user soon.


Summer Hacking

Summer has already started and we (a small group of current and ex-IIITians in Hyderabad) are planning to have some fun digging into Ruby on Rails and related technologies. If you are also interested in utilizing your summer in a productive and fun way, you can join us and share your knowledge while learning from the rest of the members at the same time.

Assuming that all of us know at least one programming language (C/C++/Python), below is the list of things we are planning to learn.

  1. Ruby
    • If you already know a programming language, it’ll not be difficult for you to pick up Ruby.
    • In case you happen to know Python, you’ll feel at home.
    • Spend a good half an hour on Ruby In Twenty Minutes and you’ll know how simple and beautiful Ruby is.
    • Once you are done with Ruby quick-starter, you can try ruby in your browser and have some fun.
    • Please go through Ruby Style Guide to see how to write beautiful and easy to understand Ruby code.
  2. Rails
    • If you have worked with any MVC framework in past, you’ll pickup rails quite easily.
    • If you have worked with Web2py, then go through this Rails vc Web2py presentation which tries to show similarities among both frameworks.
    • RailsGuides is one of best and complete documentation for getting started with Ruby on Rails. It may look like a lot of content to beginners. If that’s the case with you, you can skip the guides in Digging Deeper section.
    • RailsCasts is  like a sea of quality Ruby on Rails screencasts. Watch a few on topics where you may have doubts.
  3. jQuery
    • We’ll be learning jQuery assuming that all of us are already familiar with JavaScript.
    • We’ll learn only basics initially and explore more as we start using it in a Rails project.
  4. CoffeeScript
    • CoffeeScript is a language that compiles to JavaScript but it’s way more beautiful to look at and easier to read and understand.
    • We’ll not write JavaScript code for our Rails app. Instead, we’ll be writing CoffeeScript!
  5. SCSS
    • SCSS is an extension of CSS3. It’s fun to write stylesheets using SCSS as it brings in additional features like variables, nested rules etc.
    • SCSS will ultimately be compiled to CSS.
    • Again, there is not much to do here. Half an hour to familiarize yourself with the syntax and you are ready to roll.
  6. Twitter Bootstrap
    • Bootstrap is a super simple and crazy awesome CSS and JavaScript toolkit developed by twitter.
    • We’ll be using bootstrap to power our Rails apps which we’ll build at a later stage.
    • Nothing much to learn here. It’s more about getting familiar with commonly used classes.
  7. Git and GitHub
    • We’ll be using Git for tracking code while building our apps.
    • We’ll learn about basic Git functions like cloning a repository, committing code, pushing code to a remote repository, working in different branches etc.
    • Go through Git Basics and we can learn more as we start using it full time.
    • We’ll be using GitHub to host all our code. If you don’t have an account already, get one.

We’ll learn these technologies while working regularly at our work places. Once in a while, we’ll meet and share our experiences and knowledge. The plan is to spend one or two weeks to go through basic stuff in all the topics. After that we can start a dummy rails project and learn more as we go.

If you are not in Hyderabad and still want to join, just start exploring and we can connect online! Happy Hacking!!!