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  1. #1
    SitePoint Enthusiast stilltsie's Avatar
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    Where do I start for this project?

    Ok let me just put it out there, I suck at programming. Ive never really been able to grasp it. I am a web designer, not a develope.

    But I have a number of projects that require substantial backend programming on the horizon. One in particular will require the google maps api, and perhaps substantial modification to overlay the information on it that is required. Additionally, it will require all the other features one would expect, like user log in, etc. I was hoping Ruby would be the best choice because from what I understand its the easiest to learn. So heres my question, would I be better off leaving this to the pros and hiring someone (one of you?) or taking the plunge and learning what I need to get this accomplished. What do you think the timeframe for learning enough to accomplish the task outlined would be?

  2. #2
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    I started in the same position you find yourself in now. I was more a graphic person and stuck to the basics. If you are interested in broadening your horizons, I would definitely take the plunge.

    As far as the Google Maps API is concerned, I have worked extensively with it to create overlays and pop-up information bubbles, etc. It does not require much in the way of programming to get a handle on things. There are many resources to help you out with this:

    Google Maps API Discussion Many users to help you out

    Google Maps Documentation Google's own documentation, some of it can get technical but if you think about it logically you can get through it

    Google Maps API Tutorial I spent a lot of time at this website. Forgive the hideous website, it has a wealth of information inside.

    Google Maps API: Adding Where to your Applications E-book costs about $9


    As far as Ruby on Rails, it is probably your quickest method to building your own web app with login, etc. I have a small background in C++ and Visual Basic, so I had a jumpstart on the basics of programming but these two books have been my best references:

    Agile Web Development with Rails

    Rails Recipes

    PM me if you have any questions, otherwise the other fine folks here have your back too.

  3. #3
    SitePoint Guru
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    Ruby is much easier to learn than many other languages.

    BUT, I think nothing is easier to learn than Smalltalk. Smalltalk also has a more intuitive environment, especially for a designer. Experimenting is much easier because you can run code in your editor. http://squeak.org/

    There is only one problem: you need javascript for google maps (so you have to learn two languages). But once you know one language it's easy to learn another.

  4. #4
    SitePoint Enthusiast stilltsie's Avatar
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    Thanks so much for those valuable resources.

  5. #5
    Your daddy. WALoeIII's Avatar
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    Be aware. This isn't something you'll learn overnight. Becoming proficient enough with Ruby (or any language) to deal with the Google Maps API will take a few months of diligent work.


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