In my experience, learning a new programming language is easier if you already know one. When I started learning Python, I noticed similarities to Ruby and JavaScript; which I’m comfortable with. The shapes of the syntax in Ruby are reminiscent of the Python Programming Language and because of its Object-Oriented design, it feels familiar. Invoking functions in JavaScript and Python is basically the same. There were a couple of Python specific syntax rules that were weird at first but with practice, it becomes second nature.


I once was asked to help explain the concept of “Self” in the Ruby Programing Language. After about 3 minutes of trying to concoct a sequence of words that illustrated my understanding, I found that my audience was looking a bit more confused and frustrated about the topic. I’m aiming for the opposite of that with this blog. Here goes…..

What you Should Already Know

You should be up to speed with the basics of the Ruby Programming language. You will see examples of meta programming, implicit return values, callbacks, comments, instance methods/variables, class methods/variables, and a few other Ruby gadgets. If there is something…


Recently, I felt compelled to investigate the origins of programming and learned about a fascinating device called The Analytical Engine. It was a machine thoughtfully imagined by a man named Charles Babbage, a British polymath who had many ideas for mechanized calculators but only managed to build parts of his inventions. Had his plans for the Analytical Engine been built, it would have been an extremely complex work of mechanical art and would have been Turing-complete. Mighty glowing cogs of golden brass that stood proud at about 15 feet tall and 25 feet long. It would have been able to…


First, a little on the subject of Test-Driven Development or TDD. It is a recursive process by which we write code, test code, and repeat. In the words of Kent Beck, author of “Test-Driven Development: By Example”, it “encourages simple designs and inspires confidence.”

RSpec is communicative when it gives you feedback after you process the code you wrote against the tests. If configured for colour (which should be default in my opinion), it shows if the tested code fails in(red) or passes in (green) along with a descriptive output. It can tell you all the problems that need work…


As an aspiring programmer, I inevitably came across articles and tutorials with super hacker programmers that were using vim and it honestly looked pretty intimidating. Keeping your hands at 10 and 2 and never touching the trackpad to navigate a text editor seemed like something that was more trouble for me than what it was worth. With so many professional sounding programmers singing vim’s praises, I decided to see what the fuss was about. Once I got familiar with the basic commands and navigation, I began to understand how capable vim was. …


Object Oriented programming is a wonderful thing. It just feels right. One of the issues I came across while making a JS game was creating all of the enemies and keeping track of them all. I threw the kitchen sink at this problem until I ended up taking an Object Oriented Programming approach to it.

In Ruby pseudo code, I want to regulate how many virus enemies go on the canvas, instantiate each one with its own width, height, and coordinate properties. I also want each virus to have the ability to fall. …


For me, the best part of Flatiron Schools bootcamp is Mod 3 where you are introduced to Javascript. I do love the Ruby programming language but coming from that, I felt like I was learning a “big boy/girl” language. Being new to the world of programming, being at least acquainted with JS and makes me feel less like an outsider. I still don’t “feel like a programmer”, whatever that means, and don’t know that I ever will, but I have been waiting for that moment since I started my journey. I failed Mod one and had to retake it. I…


Creating a computer game was something that I knew that I wanted to do when I started my programming adventure. The Mod 3 project at Flatiron School had us incorporate Javascript and my partner and I were limited on ideas. I did have one that would be a stretch for us to pull off in a weeks time with very little knowledge of game making.

I might have been a little inspired to do this game because of a Mod 3 lab called “Acting on Events” . This lab walked us through moving a little pink square on the page…


The first project that I did while attending the Flatiron Bootcamp was a command line interface application using Ruby, SQLite3, and Rails’ Active Record. The idea for the app is to learn a random fact based on numbers that you can use to start a conversation with someone. The API that I found on Rapid API was the biggest source of inspiration for this so if you’re in Mod one banging your head against the wall looking for inspiration on the web, start here! Here is a short demo of what my CLI app does:

IceBreaker CLI app

There are…


Photo by Cade Roberts on Unsplash

The end of 2019 marked the end of a chapter in my life and a new one began. This next chapter takes place in a new world full of mystery, excitement, and….. confusion. I began research on this strange planet about 6 months before I set off in December. That is not enough time to understand all of the perils looming but enough to know that there are many lying in wait. …

Tom Tobar

Motorcycle Mechanic turned Full Stack Web Dev

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