The map method takes an enumerable object and a block, and runs the block for each element, outputting each returned value from the block (the original object is unchanged unless you use map!):

[1, 2, 3].map { |n| n * n } #=> [1, 4, 9]

Array and Range are enumerable types. map with a block returns an Array.  map! mutates the original array.

Where is this helpful, and what is the difference between map! and each?

Here is an example:

names = ['danil', 'edmund']

# here we map one array to another, convert each element by some rule! {|name| name.capitalize } # now names contains ['Danil', 'Edmund']

names.each { |name| puts name + ' is a programmer' } # here we just do something with each element

The output:

Danil is a programmer
Edmund is a programmer