At the startup that I joined recently, Hstry.org, we are currently building a product for the education market. Our goal with this product is to make the process of learning history more interesting and fun for students. Ultimately, we hope that our method will have a positive result on the outcome of learning. To test our product, we are running a pilot at a summer school in July and so we want to have a prototype ready by then. A few weeks ago me and my CEO attended a workshop about agile development and we thought that building this prototype would be a good opportunity to apply some agile techniques in practice. To estimate the development complexity of the features of our product, we used the “planning poker” technique and I have to say that it was a very valuable exercise.
Two weeks ago, I started learning Ruby. To get a first acquaintance with the language, I followed the Ruby course on Code Academy. I had never followed any tutorial there and it’s alright. It’s quite simplistic because they target beginner programmers. For me, it was good to get to know the syntax of the language and get in touch with a few basic Ruby constructs like blocks, procs and modules. So far I am really enjoying the language; I like the fact that it is so concise.
The next steps for me are to practice the language by solving some Euler problems while at the same time reading Programming Ruby, diving into the Ruby on Rails documentation, follow the Ruby tutorials on Code School and writing tests for an application that I took over. Needless to say it’s going to be busy times!
I recently started using the SASS framework for any front-end development work that I do. The trigger came from a ever-going frustration about trying to write maintainable CSS code. Now I wish that I had discovered SASS earlier. I’m even so positive about it that I wrote this article to share my experiences.