I talked with my publisher yesterday about a second edition for Rails 3 in Action and we agreed upon the idea of doing one. This means that the writing time that I *was* going to devote to patching up the Getting Started Guide has now been taken over by my other responsibility.
This means that we're going to need another person to be responsible for the writing on this guide.
I've been re-working it at the moment to walk people through creating both the posts and comments resources *without* using scaffolding, and I would very much like it if that were were to continue.
Where we're at right now is on the cusp of telling the reader about models, and so that'd be an excellent place to start. From there, you'll show the reader how to save the data into the database and then talk about validations for that data. In the midst of all this, you'll need to mention about a show action.
Currently, we're defining routes one-at-a-time, and I would like that habit to continue. Show them resource routing at the very end of the posts section.
Moving on from the *creation* of a post, the next obvious step is to show them about edit and update. Then show them about partials, extracting the form from app/views/posts/new.html.erb into a form partial that can be included into both the new and edit templates. In doing this, you'll probably also teach them about form_for and how it decides what action to go to.
Once you're done with that, cover the destruction of a resource. And blammo, you're done! At the end of all this, the reader should understand the concept of MVC, how to create a resource from scratch without using scaffolding.
Then once you're done with all that, have a brief interlude covering the resource routes, going deeper into REST.
Then, the next major part covers creating the comments resource. The reason we keep that there is to re-enforce the building of a resource from scratch and to introduce the new concepts of associations and nested resources.
Finally, at the end of the guide, readers should understand everything they need to not to ask the kind of uninformed questions that using the scaffold forces people to.