## With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more.

No credit card required

It takes time and practice to get used to recursion, and you will ultimately learn two sets of skills: reading recursive code, and writing recursive code. Reading recursive code is somewhat easier, so let’s first get some practice with that.

Let’s look at another example: calculating factorials.

A factorial is best illustrated with an example:

The factorial of 3 is:

3 * 2 * 1 = 6

The factorial of 5 is:

5 * 4 * 3 * 2 * 1 = 120

And so on and so forth. Here’s a recursive implementation that returns a number’s factorial using Ruby:

 ​ ​def​ ​factorial​(number) ​ ​if​ number == 1 ​ ​return​ 1 ​ ​else​ ​ ​return​ number * factorial(number - 1) ​ ​end​ ​ ​end​

This code can look somewhat confusing at first glance, but here’s the ...

## With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, interactive tutorials, and more.

No credit card required