Joy of Elixir

About "Joy of Elixir"

Joy of Elixir came about because I saw that there was not very much when it comes to absolute beginner material for learning Elixir. There's the excellent Getting Started guide on and the Programming Elixir book, but those feel like they're more targeted towards experienced programmers. They teach Elixir with a lot of assumed knowledge about programming languages. They're great books, but they're only great books for experienced programmers.

There's also the wonderful Elixir School site that serves well as a reference guide to the features of Elixir, but what newbies really need is a gentler introduction to Elixir.

Joy of Elixir avoids assuming you know anything about programming while teaching you about your first programming language: Elixir.

It seemed like there is a vast, empty, cavernous void where there should be something like the excellent Learn to Program book by Chris Pine. That book is for another programming language called Ruby; but there feels like there should be an equivalent to that for Elixir.

We have people completely new to programming wanting to learn Elixir — because people who have learned Elixir already told them about it and how cool it is! — but the support is not-quite-there yet. So this is an attempt to fill that void. Essentially a response to: "Why won't somebody think of the newbies?". Well, someone is thinking of the newbies.

I want Joy of Elixir to be the go-to-resource for teaching people (yes, that means you!) programming for the very first time using Elixir. I want you to experience the joy that Elixir (and programming in general) can bring to people. I want you to feel like you have power over the machine because of the knowledge contained within this book.

I want you to feel competent as our future's potential computer programmers. I want you to feel like you can become a programmer. This isn't stuff a "chosen few" can do. You're capable of learning this too.

Who did this?

The first Joy of Elixir thing you probably saw was the logo. It's only fair that this gets mentioned first, since it's the first thing. This logo was designed by Brandon Weaver. Thanks Brandon!

The Joy of Elixir project was started by Ryan Bigg (that's me). I love teaching people about programming and I wanted to write something to teach programming-first-timers about programming. Elixir is a great first language to use as it is simple to learn — especially if you have a good book leading the way!

I came up with an idea for this book while working at Culture Amp. I was mentoring a junior developer — Ramya Ravindranath — and she wanted to learn about Elixir, but found Programming Elixir a little difficult to get through. Around about the same time, one of my brothers-in-law — Dean Lynch — wanted to learn programming and I thought that he should learn Elixir... but then realised there wasn't a beginner's friendly book for people like him!

So really this book is written for people like Ramya and Dean. I have them in mind a lot when I'm writing this book.


This book is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 4.0 License. This means it is free to share. You can grab the source of this book from this book's GitHub repository.

So please do share it freely amongst your friends, associates, workers, pets, lovers, etc.