By Christopher Haupt

Ruby is a flexible, general-purpose language that is useful for many kinds of projects. There are many different computer programming languages out there. Each language has strengths and weaknesses. Some languages are easier if you’re trying to control large machines. Some languages are specialized for mobile apps — the kind on an iPhone, for example. Some languages make it easy to create websites. And some languages are for doing science and engineering.

A general-purpose programming language is good for many different kinds of projects. There are many general-purpose programming languages to choose from. The important thing when you’re wanting to learn programming is to pick something and dive into training yourself to think like a programmer. When you learn one programming language, learning another one is much, much easier.

Ruby was created in the mid-1990s in Japan by Yukihiro Matsumoto (best known by his nickname, “Matz”). Don’t worry — you don’t have to learn Japanese to program with Ruby! Today Ruby is used around the world for all kinds of projects, by beginners and professionals alike.

Matz had a wonderful philosophy in mind when creating Ruby: He wanted programmers to be productive, enjoy programming, and be happy. This is one of the great things about Ruby: As you learn it and write programs, you’ll have fun!