: Contributing - Style Guide : : Scripts


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One perspective to approach understanding how Rubinius implements Ruby begins with understanding how various concepts in Ruby work. The purpose of this topic is to introduce Rubinius features by way of Ruby concepts that should already be familiar. The Rubinius documentation generally assumes that you are either familiar with Ruby or familiar with virtual machine and compiler concepts.

Central to each of the topics below is the concept of scope. In Ruby syntax, scope is generally a derived concept. In other words, there are not syntax elements whose primary responsibility it is to delimit or reference scope. For this reason, it can be confusing to talk about scope. An example of this is a normal method definition:

a = 5

def diligent(a)
  puts a * 2

Here, the #diligent method gives us a name with which to refer to the computation puts a * 2. But the method also defines a closed lexical scope for the variable a. The scope is closed because the a = 5 above the method definition has no relation to the variable a in #diligent.

Often it is asserted that everything in Ruby is an object. This is not quite true. Most things in Ruby are objects, but some things that are absolutely essential for running Ruby code are not necessarily objects that you can put your hands on. Instead, which of these “execution environment” things are objects in Ruby depends heavily on the implementation. Scope is one of these things.

Essentially, scope as a concept is a context for answering questions such as: What is the value of self here? What local variables exist here? What value will the constant APPLE have at this point in the code?

Each of the following elements of Ruby are discussed from the perspective of understanding how Rubinius implements them and how the concept of scope is involved in each one.

  1. Scripts
  2. Methods
  3. Constants
  4. Classes & Modules
  5. Blocks & Procs
  6. Local Variables
  7. Instance Variables
  8. Class Variables
  9. Global Variables
: Contributing - Style Guide : : Scripts

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