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Play by Play: Zed Shaw


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Zed Shaw is one of the most original thinkers and prolific programmers currently active in Open Source.

In 2006 he kick started the Ruby web application server market and continues it with the Mongrel2 server. He’s an expert teacher and has taught over 300,000 people with his free book Learn Python the Hard Way.

In this screencast he builds a code stats tool for tracking errors and warnings. But we think you’ll appreciate most the conclusion of the project where he talks about the things he learned from using a previous implementation of a code statistics tool for a full year.

No matter what programming language you use, you’ll learn from Zed’s reflections on the art and craft of writing code. Topics covered include:

  • The role of source code control
  • Writing readable code
  • The process of understanding and solving code problems
  • Testing

This screencast is part of a new series at PeepCode where we sit down with expert programmers and watch them work. The point isn’t to create a deployable product, but rather to discover workflow tips and development hacks that usually require years of experience to figure out.

Unlike most other PeepCode Screencasts, we move through this project with only minimal hand-holding. You’re watching an expert at work!

Available as part of a PeepCode Unlimited subscription (including streaming on our iOS app!) Business plans are also available.


This is a high-level screencast, but you’ll benefit if you have any programming experience at all. Python and C are used for the examples.

Revision 1 (Notes) · Updated: Apr 29, 2011 · Length: 110 min · 300 MB

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