How do I get started with Racket?
You keep hearing good things about Racket. You get the impression that if you want to get into Lisp—andespecially if you want to get into making domain-specific languages and language-oriented programming—then Racket is a great choice.
But you just don’t have time to pick up a new language. You’re a busy programmer. Racket looks cool, but where’s the structure for learning it? You’ve got better things to do than to try to reverse-engineer your own handcrafted course from the official docs or aimlessly scrounge around for the good bits among countless documentation pages, blog posts, StackOverflow questions, Quora answers, you name it. And you don’t need a college course on introductory computer science where Racket just happens to be the language used to illustrate the ideas. You’re a working programmer, for crying out loud! You already learned that stuff and practice it every day.
You wish you could quickly see what Racket has to offer, before going whole hog. You don’t need anything BIG, just a little guidance to get you started. You know from experience that once you’re motivated to learn a programming language more deeply, you can probably figure it out from there and bootstrap your way up. You just need that little nudge to get started.
But the basic problem remains: You don’t know what you don’t know, so how do you even start? Are you sure you won’t miss something really special about Racket?
What if you could take a short structured excursion into Racket to find out what it’s all about? What if you could quickly take in some highlights and absorb the juicy parts of the language?
What if you had an opportunity to see a hand-selected bundle of great ideas illustrating what real-world Racket programming is like?
All it takes is a couple of days. The question is: What are you doing this weekend?
Racket Weekend is a short course on the Racket programming language. Intended length: 2 days. (Of course, I’m not watching, so take it as slow or as fast as you want.)
Racket is big. They call it
batteries included, and they’re not joking around. So if you’ve only got a weekend, it’s important to focus on the best that the language has to offer. In Racket Weekend, you’ll learn about the Racket approach to the following ideas:
Racket Weekend is available in three editions, each offering the course in various ways.
The basic PDF ebook version of the course.
The Couch Edition plus worksheets in PDF format, which contain 45 exercises that ask you to go beyond the given material and make it your own. This version includes the ebook, too. Ideal for those who want to stretch themselves and be more active in their learning.
The most comprehensive version of Racket Weekend contains the ebook, the worksheets, and videos where I do conversational coding, talking about the exercises and solving them while you watch, adding some material that is not easily put into written form.
Choose the edition of Racket Weekend you’d like and click the button below; the editions will be shown as a drop-down menu:
I’m Jesse Alama. I’ve been hacking Lisps (first Scheme, then Common Lisp, then Clojure, and most recently Racket) since 1996. I’m the author of Server: Racket—Practical Web Development with the Racket HTTP Server and maintain a several Racket packages.