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Interview with Vladimir Dementyev

Vladimir Dementyev is the author of Layered Design for Ruby on Rails Applications; we got the chance to sit down and find out more about his experience of writing with Packt.

Q: What is the name of your book?

Vladimir: Layered Design for Ruby on Rails Applications

Q: What are your specialist tech areas?

Vladimir: Web applications development

Q: How did you become an author for Packt? Tell us about your journey. What was your motivation for writing this book?

Vladimir: I’ve been writing for Evil Martian’s blog for a long time. And looks like I produced some good enough content to be noticed by Packt and be invited to write a book. That was something I’d been thinking of for a long time, so I decided to give it a try.

Q: What kind of research did you do, and how long did you spend researching before beginning the book?

Vladimir: The book is based on my experience working on many Ruby on Rails applications over about ten years. So, I just needed to rethink my past experience and transform it into something that could be used by others.

Q: Did you face any challenges during the writing process? How did you overcome them?

Vladimir: It turned out that writing a book requires a much higher level of concentration and inspiration than writing code or blog posts or preparing conference talks. The biggest challenge was to find the right mood for writing, to free my mind from the world outside. Given how terrible the world has become recently, it was quite challenging. One thing that helped me was to write the book while on rails. Like, literally rails, sitting on a train. The book on Ruby on Rails was partially written on Rails—isn’t it fun?

Q: What’s your take on the technologies discussed in the book? Where do you see these technologies heading in the future?

Vladimir: I spent most of my professional life working with Ruby on Rails. It is formed by the perception of software development: developers are not tools, they are humans; we should focus on their happiness and productivity, so they can build amazing things. This is Ruby and Rails. And I’m pretty sure these ideas will last for ages (even if at some point the technologies behind them change).

Q: Why should readers choose this book over others already on the market? How would you differentiate your book from its competition?

Vladimir: This book aims to teach readers the principles of designing Ruby on Rails applications for maintainability. This is not a book of ready-made recipes; you can’t just grab code snippets, put them into your codebase, and feel yourself a better engineer. No. This book doesn’t give you the right answer, it helps you to find one that would better fit your situation.

Q: What are the key takeaways you want readers to come away with from the book?

Vladimir: The primary takeaways are better understanding the framework design (The Rails Way) and learning how to extend a classic Rails architecture while keeping code maintainable and developers productive

Q. What advice would you give to readers jumping into this technology? Do you have any top tips?

Vladimir: Ruby on Rails is an amazing technology for newcomers. You can build a real application in minutes just by following the guides. And you go pretty far with Rails and its Omakase approach. However, you should keep in mind that the initial simplicity can quickly turn into a huge technical debt that must be paid. And that’s where this book comes into play: it shares ideas on keeping the codebase in a healthy state for the long haul (and your tech credit score high 😉).

Q. Do you have a blog that readers can follow?

Vladimir: You can find my articles at https://evilmartians.com/chronicles

Q: Can you share any blogs, websites, and forums to help readers gain a holistic view of the tech they are learning? What are the key takeaways you want readers to come away with from the book?

Vladimir: Start with the official Rails Guides (https://guides.rubyonrails.org). Then, consider checking GoRails, DriftingRuby, or SupeRails screencasts.

Q. How would you describe your author’s journey with Packt? Would you recommend Packt to aspiring authors?

Vladimir: Without Packt, I wouldn’t ever write a book, for sure. The collaboration was a perfect fit for me: I could focus on the book contents, while Packt helped with everything else.

Q. Do you belong to any tech community groups?

Vladimir: Nope

Q. What are your favorite tech journals? How do you keep yourself up to date on tech?

Vladimir: I’m mostly reading newsletters (RubyWeekly, GoWeekly, Changelog) and Twitter to stay up to date.

Q. How did you organize, plan, and prioritize your work and write the book?

Vladimir: I used Trello to keep track of the progress and set deadlines, a card for each chapter. I also used cards to collect ideas, links, and code snippets as well.

Q. What is that one writing tip that you found most crucial and would like to share with aspiring authors?

Vladimir: Don’t try to meet the deadlines 😁 This additional stress doesn’t help in getting things done. Focus on the contents instead.

Q. Would you like to share your social handles? If so, please share.

Vladimir: Twitter

You can find Vladimir’s book on Amazon by following this link: Please click here

Layered Design for Ruby on Rails Applications is available on Amazon.com