Sorry for the gravedig, mods feel free to delete but I think it's a pretty good addition to the still-stickied thread. A list of phenomenal sites that introduce you to Ruby itself:
-- basic introduction to ruby fundamentals
Ruby Bits Pt. 1
http://www.codeschool.com/courses/ruby-bits-part-2Ruby Bits Pt. 2
All these are run by Code School and are completely worked in your browser with an interpreter.
And some excellent Rails guides:
Those 4 are run by Code School as well, and all coding is done entirely in an interpreter in the browser.
And I think this is probably the best guide out there for everything there is to basic Rails, it covers installation of Ruby, Gems, Git, and Rails from scratch, bundling and the MVC architecture, quickly rolling out a simple app with scaffolding, setting your app up to scale with Heroku, and a complete tutorial on how to write an app from scratch. This guide is a legitimate book that's available for sale, but you can also read it online for free on the official Rails website: http://ruby.railstutorial.org/ruby-o...-tutorial-book
Hope these help everyone, again sorry for the gravedig but trying to help out a seemingly dying forum.