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PragPub Issue #12, Rails beta now on paper

June 02, 2010

Hard to believe a year has gone by, but this month marks the twelfth issue of our monthly magazine, PragPub. Stop by and get your offline copy in PDF, epub, mobi, or read the issue online in HTML. Also, you’ll be pleased to see that Agile Web Development with Rails 4th Edition beta is now optionally available in paperback.

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Agile Web Development with Rails Beta on Paper

The Fourth Edition of Agile Web Development with Rails has grown to more than 300 pages already. While the beta is still ongoing (and will keep going until Rails 3.0 stabilizes), you now have the option of buying a paperback snapshot at any point in time. This is a separate purchase from the beta ebook and/or final book, for those of you who just have to have paper now, warts and all. Beta and beta-on-paper available from, also see the FAQ at

Agile Microsoft? Really?

To some developers, Microsoft’s technologies are a given, the river they swim in. To others, not using Microsoft’s tools is the default. PragPub being an open source- and Agile-friendly kind of magazine, we tend to connect with the latter group.

So when we get an article titled “Agile Microsoft,” we are naturally intrigued. And we think you’ll also be intrigued by Jonathan McCracken’s introduction to ASP.NET MVC, a framework that some have called “Rails for .NET.”

And there’s plenty more good stuff in this issue.

Have you ever described a software project you were working on as “a house of cards?” Get a little careless with one addition and the whole structure comes crashing down, right? Or have you ever, while working on some legacy code project, felt like you were playing the game Operation, where one sloppy move leads to disaster?

Ola Ellnestam and Daniel Brolund have another game-originated metaphor for this touchiness of complex software projects: the game of Pick Up Sticks, also known as Mikado. The trick to that game is identifying the next stick you can pick up without disturbing any of the other sticks. Ola and Daniel present an approach to refactoring based on that game. They call it the Mikado Method.

It’s an eclectic issue of PragPub. We have essays by Jonathan Rasmusson and Brian Tarbox on how to make yourself indispensable as a developer and the desirability of developer internships, respectively. And Dan Wohlbruck celebrates Alan Turing’s birthday with an essay on his contributions.

Plus, then there’s Andy Lester writing about what to do when you get fired, Mike Swaine dissing multitasking, John Shade getting lost in the HP Way, our events calendar, a quiz, and a selection of prime tweets.

All available for free, as in beer, from

Enjoy, and pass it along!

P.S. If you’re reading someone else’s copy of this newsletter, why not subscribe and get your own. Just sign up for an account on and we’ll send it straight to you.

Coming Soon:

  • The Pragmatic Guide series
  • Hello, Android 3rd Ed in print
  • HTML5 and CSS3 in beta

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Thanks for your continued support,

Andy & Dave