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Ruby Programming

Is Ruby Dying? 400

Posted by Soulskill
from the netcraft-confirms-it dept.
New submitter John Moses writes "I have been working with node.js a lot lately, and have been discussing with co-workers if node.js is taking steam away from Ruby at all. I think the popularity of the language is an important talking point when selecting a language and framework for a new project. A graph on the release date of gems over time could help determine an answer. The front page of RubyGems only shows data on the most popular, but I am really interested in seeing recent activity. My theory is that if developers' contributions to different gems is slowing down, then so is the popularity of the language."
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Is Ruby Dying?

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  • Short answer: no (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gentryx (759438) * on Tuesday December 24, 2013 @04:11PM (#45777689) Homepage Journal
    Long answer: a better indicator is how many Google queries for the respective languages are issued. And those suggest that Ruby is standing stronger than ever []. Ruby is more than just Rails. And just because there is yet another web apps framework, it doesn't mean that the other ones automatically lose traction.
  • by lgw (121541) on Tuesday December 24, 2013 @04:23PM (#45777781) Journal

    How about picking the best tool for the job, rather than holding a popularity contest? Too old-fashioned?

    It's good to avoid going too far off into the weeds, lest you find it impossible to hire someone to support code in some pet language, but that's not the concern here. Of the universe of languages, both mainstream and niche languages commonly used in your niche, pick the one that makes it easiest to develop and support the features in front of you.

    It's pretty obvious someone is playing "what language will look best on my resume" here, and if playing that game is obvious to me from this distance, it will be glaring to hiring managers. Few people are looking for a history of "trendy" (you'd be amazed how fast "trendy" becomes "sad" in tech), while a history of doing the dirty, unpopular, work that keeps development teams productive is always welcome, long after the tech stack fades into obsolescence.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 24, 2013 @04:24PM (#45777787)

    Interesting that even though PHP's interest has declined over time (according to the same chart []), it's still more popular than Python & Ruby combined.

  • by thule (9041) on Tuesday December 24, 2013 @04:24PM (#45777789) Homepage
    Chef and Puppet are huge in DevOps. It seems Ruby has found its niche.
  • Short answer: yes. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by hessian (467078) on Tuesday December 24, 2013 @04:56PM (#45778027) Homepage Journal

    Trends always die.

    All-purpose languages that adapt over time are better tools to learn.

    You learn more in depth, instead of having certain tasks be very easy.

    This is similar to the trade off between wizard-based interfaces and actually knowing what you're doing with an operating system.

  • by SuricouRaven (1897204) on Tuesday December 24, 2013 @04:59PM (#45778043)

    Learn C. Almost everything else draws from it. Learn C, and you're half-way to learning anything else.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday December 24, 2013 @05:21PM (#45778183)

    This isn't about anyone's "personal feelings" about JavaScript.

    This is about the hard, objective facts. This is about basic software engineering principles. This is about a minimal level of professionalism.

    JavaScript is objectively a bad language. I really hope that we don't need to go through the list of problems with it, but maybe we should address at least some of the most serious problems. Its type system is very broken. Its object system is a joke (prototype OO is always inferior to class OO; that's why everyone tries to fake classes using prototypes, and the result is always terrible). Its comparison operators are broken. It doesn't offer sensible modularity. It doesn't offer useful namespacing. Its implementations are generally bad, even the ones receiving much investment and effort from large and well-funded organizations like Google, Apple, Mozilla and Microsoft. Its development tools are a decade or more behind those of Java and C++. It's rife with stupidity like semicolon insertion. It has almost no standard library, and what does exist exhibits complete idiocy in almost every respect.

    For crying out loud, the most respected JavaScript book is Crockford's "JavaScript: The Good Parts". Almost the entire book tells you to not use significant features of JavaScript! Only a very broken programming language would have a book like that become so popular and recommended.

    Professional software developers can only express disgust when it comes to JavaScript. There's just no way that anyone who cares about doing a good job can seriously consider it anything less that a terrible disaster. JavaScript is indisputably a horrible programming language. It's just not possible to suggest otherwise.

  • by bmimatt (1021295) on Tuesday December 24, 2013 @05:22PM (#45778187)
    Dear Ruby: Please leave Chef behind and go and die in some dark corner. Take rails with you. Thanks.
  • by dunkelfalke (91624) on Tuesday December 24, 2013 @05:58PM (#45778487)

    The problem with it is that if you learn C as first language, you probably will always write C in any language. With all the ugly hacks and trying to reinvent the wheel time and time again.

    I write in C for a living, but frankly, while I love my job, I don't like the language. It is just a bit more high level than a macro assembler and full of crazy behaviour.

  • by tibman (623933) on Tuesday December 24, 2013 @06:11PM (#45778589) Homepage

    Bad language or not, it is already used heavily on the client-side. Using it server-side allows you to make use of the same objects without having to maintain things like validation logic in two languages. It also means that if you are using Karma or something similar for testing that you only need one testing framework. Otherwise you'd need two testing frameworks running. Switching gears from one language to the next isn't hard but going from strongly typed to dynamic often results in developers trying to strongly type their javascript or writing it in such a way that it becomes too rigid. Tests should be governing everything anyways, especially if it is TDD.

    My company is using C# on the back-end and javascript on the front. I write php+javascript at home though (and have experienced a life-time of derision from "professional" developers for it). I still write C/C++ for linux and embedded projects. Too many developers have decided their language is the best and everything else is horrible. When really, every language is covered in warts. Every language has (had) growing pains. Have you ever wondered why if your language is the best it is rarely used in all situations? That's because it's not the best tool for every job.

    Your kind is nothing new. Anyone who has a passion for programming runs into people with your attitude and just shrugs. It is almost like dealing with a form of bigotry.

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