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What is Ruby on Rails? 296

Robby Russell writes " has published another article by Curt Hibbs titled, 'What is Ruby on Rails?.' In this article, Curt goes on to discuss all the major components of the popular Rails web framework and shows it does a lot of the heavy lifting for you. This article highlights all the major features, from Active Record to Web Services, which are going to be included in the upcoming 1.0 RC release of Ruby on Rails. With one book published already and four more on the way, do you think Rails will continue gaining as much popularity in the coming year?" An interesting follow-up to the two part tutorial from earlier this year.
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What is Ruby on Rails?

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  • by physicsphairy ( 720718 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:14AM (#13790259) Homepage
    "With one book published already and four more on the way, do you think Rails will continue gaining as much popularity in the coming year?"

    "Yes." -- some slashdotters
    "No." -- other slashdotters

    Oh, and your horoscope for today is "Give generously to people you meet online who make you laugh."

  • Watch the demo... (Score:5, Informative)

    by fak3r ( 917687 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:15AM (#13790268) Homepage
    Before any bashes it as being a flash in the pan, watch the demo [] and see the framework that it provides and how natural it is to build webapps on top of. Truly an interesting language for the web.

    Speaking of, why don't you check out my Ruby on Rails/Typo based blog, [] ;) be sure to try out that 'live search' (try 'bsd') for a taste of RoR/AJAX fun!
    • by fak3r ( 917687 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:39AM (#13790438) Homepage
      Wow - thanks to all that are hitting my site, I'm sitting here at work watching multitail try and keep up with all the requests on my home server! Typo uses Lighttpd (I have Apache2 running, but it's using mod_proxy to pass all requests to to Lighttpd) which is supposed to be 'lighter' and perform much better under load than Apache. I assume that's true because the logs are flying by, and the log from the Typo server is saying things like:
      Completed in 0.01254 (79 reqs/sec) | Rendering: 0.00618 (49%) | DB: 0.00146 (11%) [ []
      Am I reading this right? Most are coming up with 10-40 /reqs/second, but damn, this is on a homeserver (FreeBSD 6.0 - 1.2Gig - 512Megs) with a 384/1.5 DSL! I'm doing full refreshes here and not seeing any obvious lag - I've never had this much sustained traffic, but this looks very good for Lighttpd! (only been using it for this blog, which started ~ a week ago). Checking top I see 'ruby' but it's way down there, below multilog/tail and such... Hmm...need to check that migration from Apache to Lighty perhaps! ;)

      For those late to the party, that's []! (just try and bring it down hehe...)
      • For those late to the party, that's []! (just try and bring it down hehe...)

        heh heh... you had to ask, didn't you? :)

      • For those late to the party, that's! (just try and bring it down hehe...)

        Do not try the L337 sk1llz of Slashdotters, for they are unsubtle and quick to code a DoS script!

      • Checking top I see 'ruby' but it's way down there, below multilog/tail and such...

        I guess you've just discovered that it doesn't take much CPU to render 500 responses.

      • Impressive. Simply impressive.

        The response that I saw from the suggested query was quite snappy. I didn't know you were doing this off an ADSL link.

        I almost wish I'd brushed up on my Ruby coding skills and did our online store that I'm currently working on in RoR, but we chose JSP/Java Servlet stuff because of concerns of access to developers and scaling. I'm sure you're not going to tump that one over and all you're going to see is your pipe choked full- DoS by Slashdot, done to oneself. Brave soul. :-
      • Typo caches most pages (like the index page and most blog post pages) to static HTML pages which is probably why your site is still 'snappy' on refreshes.

        Because the pages are cached as normal HTML pages, Ruby/Rails is not started up for those pages and thus can be served up extremely fast.
        • Re:Watch the demo... (Score:4, Interesting)

          by fak3r ( 917687 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @12:23PM (#13791305) Homepage
          Yep, mostly what I'm seeing (apache's http-access.log and typo/logs) are straight web-server access (mod_proxy on apache -> lighttpd) but plenty of 'live searches' (which is why I suggested it) when fcgi (dispatch.fcgi) takes over and chats with the database. Still, even those are coming back faster than I'd expected. Yes, I've had 1 minute refreshes of the front page, but I didn't expect it to be perfect, I've just never had this kinda sustained traffic to study, and am really impressed with how Typo/Lighttpd are working.

          It's just something when it's a box that you built by hand from newegg parts, then installed/tweaked freebsd on, and then setup a new blog just a few weeks back, to see it perform.
          • Re:Watch the demo... (Score:3, Informative)

            by consumer ( 9588 )
            Well, given those hardware specs, I would expect apache to be able to serve about 800 or so static pages per second. Your bottleneck is your bandwidth, so your choice of webserver is pretty much irrelevant here.
    • Before any bashes it as being a flash in the pan, watch the demo and see the framework that it provides and how natural it is to build webapps on top of. Truly an interesting language for the web.

      I look at it the other way - because 90+% of all languages and especially extensions like RonR *are* fads, I'm looking for reasons to believe that it isn't. Unfortunately, the actual quality of said product is nearly irrelevant. The better question is who's adopting it, and for RonR, I'm not seeing any heavywei

    • by Bruce Perens ( 3872 ) <> on Friday October 14, 2005 @11:18AM (#13790766) Homepage Journal

      ModelSecurity helps Ruby on Rails developers implement a security defense in depth by implementing access control within the data model.

      If you are like most developers, you think about security when you program controllers and views. But a bug in your controller or view can compromise the security of your application, unless your data model has also been secured.

      The economical, flexible, and extremely readable means of specifying access controls provided by ModelSecurity makes it easier for the developer to think about security, and makes security assumptions that might otherwise live in one developers head concrete and communicable to others.

  • by CSHARP123 ( 904951 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:17AM (#13790289)
    I know this. This is that ruby going on the choo-choo train.
  • by shic ( 309152 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:19AM (#13790300)
    I am intrigued by Rails and have the book waiting for me to read at home. I am curious, however, is Rails only really useful to implement something which uses the MVC (Model View Controller) architecture - where the model is defined in the context of a SQL RDBMS... or would Rails also be useful, for example, to aggregate a number of, say, local web-services to implement a single combined web service or site?
    • Rails is useful in so many ways. Rails is a very cohesive collection of components that make up a complete web development platform, but it is easy to use the indivdual components standalone.

      For example, I've used ActiveRecord by itself for database access. The application was a simple command-line utility that interacted with a local database. No web development, but ActiveRecord made it extremely easy to interact with the db.

      Another example, I've used ActionView and ActionController without ActiveRecord t
    • The models in Rails are not required to be ActiveRecord (the SQL object layer) classes at all. You could have model classes that delegate calls out to another web-service like you describe, and even make use of some ActiveRecord facilities with a little more work to override the default functionality that hits up the database.

      As the article says, there are really two components to the framework, ActiveRecord and ActionPack, which handle the model, then the controller/view sections respectively. Each of th
  • by WhoDey ( 629879 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:21AM (#13790315) Homepage
    TFA seems to be written by a used car salesman. Or maybe those guys on the infomercials late night for different "enhancement" drugs.
    • I read the first section of the article and I'm no closer to understanding Ruby on Rails than I was before. It promised a lot but delivered very little.
    • Rails was written by a used car salesman too.
    • I am pretty big on Java. I have done several years worth of Java work. I decided to finally try Rails out so I could finally see if the hype was worth it or not. I was *quite* impressed. I realize there are about 10 million concerns that pop into my head. Legacy applications, complex ORM mapping, ona nd on. But for new software it truly is amazing. Its fast and easy and it just seems to work. I am not generally to excitable about new technology I have seen a lot. When I was finished playing with RoR for abo
  • by some_canadian_hacker ( 855993 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:21AM (#13790317) Homepage

    It's good to see that a structured methodology is being introduced into the world of web development. I've seen some really shoddy implementations of *SQL APIs into a myriad of differing web platforms, and because this helps to tie together the actual implementation of database-driven web apps, the developers are freeer to work on other things... security issues? Maintaining database structure? Doing the groceries? It doesn't matter all that much when less time is spent making the framework for a web application.

    Looks promising.

    • by Krimszon ( 815968 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @02:45PM (#13792581)
      I can't feel frameworks take away my control. It's like I want to do all those things myself, even though I know I can't do it as good as them. Also, I don't know if I can ever really understand what it is, only that I have to type something like :scaffold whatever and I'll hit the ground running. Wonderful, but...

      I feel like the real skill of development lies in making stuff like that, and if it becomes defacto, all you do is build applications from building blocks. I feel it takes away some of the 'art' of development. You'd say, oh I build a nice webshop, and the other person would sya, what did you use, and your answer wouldn't be php, mysql, some html/css and javascripting. It'd be Ruby on Rails, of Smarty Templates combined with some Data Access layer, or a whole lot of those java spring/hibernate thingies. And all you did was tie up the ends.

      I know it makes no sense not to use it, it's much a better choice. Make more money, easier, faster. But still, there's that feeling, know what I mean?
      • I feel like the real skill of development lies in making stuff like that, and if it becomes defacto, all you do is build applications from building blocks. I feel it takes away some of the 'art' of development. You'd say, oh I build a nice webshop, and the other person would sya, what did you use, and your answer wouldn't be php, mysql, some html/css and javascripting. It'd be Ruby on Rails, of Smarty Templates combined with some Data Access layer, or a whole lot of those java spring/hibernate thingies. And

  • by fatboy ( 6851 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:25AM (#13790342)
    Everything from templates to control flow to business logic is written in Ruby

    Uh, doesn't business logic belong in the database where the datagnomes live?
    • by anpe ( 217106 )
      Uh, doesn't business logic belong in the database where the datagnomes live?
      If you're using RoR, your code we'll be generated with a Controller, a Model and a View. Business rules code belongs to the Controller.
      Google for MVC, you seem to miss the point completly (or was it a joke?).
    • by PhilipPeake ( 711883 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:34AM (#13790398)
      You have been drinking too much Oracle Koolaid....
    • by hey! ( 33014 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @11:46AM (#13791006) Homepage Journal
      Is that there is no answer. At least no answer that is ten words or less and covers every possible case.

      People who say that business logic never belongs in the database are people who tend to be application developers. They are committed to a client platform (say j2ee), and database platforms (oracle and postgres and the like) vary from client to client.

      People who own data on the other hand tend to have the database platform constant, but need to get at it and manipulate it from multiple platforms (j2ee, perl, VB, Access etc.) A viable definition of "database" in my book is a collection of data that is organized to be reused across apps.

      A choice algorithm I'd use is this: If it has to do with the logical consistency of the data, it belongs in the database tier. If it is only possible to meet the needs of the project you are doing in one way, choose that way. Otherwise decide what part of your system is least likely to change, try to put as much as you can there.

      The closest I can get to my self imposed ten word limit is this:

      Business logic belongs in the tier you're most committed to.
  • Seaside ? (Score:3, Informative)

    by roard ( 661272 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:25AM (#13790348) Homepage
    While Ruby on Rails is nice, particularly for CRUD applications, I wonder why nobody speak of Seaside [] ...

    Ok, I know, it's probably because it's written in that extremely complex and arcane language, Smalltalk... not. Smalltalk is extremely simple to use -- literally a child's play ;-)

    Anyway, Seaside is an incredible framework to develop Web Applications -- not just CRUD apps. It has a wonderful component system, inspired by WebObjects (another wonderful framework !), and leverage Smalltalk: you have compilation on the fly, you can modify something at runtime (and I mean, even without quitting the current web session !), use the incredible debugging/refactoring possibilities, and reuse of the zillions of libraries and code available for Squeak [].

    More over, it has continuations. And that's really useful (as Paul Graham demonstrated..) for building neat webapps. Basically with Seaside you program applications nearly the same way you'd program a "normal" application. The whole HTTP process is completely abstracted (check the videos []).

    Frankly, it's really a joy to develop with Seaside, and you should have a look :-)

  • forget Rails (Score:3, Informative)

    by the_2nd_coming ( 444906 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:28AM (#13790367) Homepage
    I love TurboGears []. It is easier to set up and SQLObject is nicer to work with than the database tools in Rails. but it is also a Python based framework, so if you are a rubynista, then rails is defiantly the way to go.
    • but it is also a Python based framework, so if you are a rubynista, then rails is defiantly the way to go.

      When I read the word rubynista the first thought that came to mind was "I can totally picture someone saying that on a show like Queer Eye for the Straight Guy". I'm not sure that was the intended reaction.

    • I love Nitro [].
  • by Anonymous Coward
    The article summary seems to imply that WebServices will be new to the 1.0rc of Rails. This is not the case. I've been writing WebServices with Rails for several months now using the built in WebServices support.
  • by Fished ( 574624 ) <`moc.liamg' `ta' `yrogihpma'> on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:36AM (#13790416)
    I've been using RoR, and I'm convinced that it is not just a flash in the pan. Let me preface this by saying that I've programmed in just about everything out there... from perl/mod_perl/cgi development, to php, to Zope, to Java, to Struts, etc. I have never seen a framework that makes it so easy to quickly develop well-architected applications as rails. A lot of the credit for this goes to two things. First, Rails features, out of the box, excellent use of automation to setup the structure of your app for you. I can have basic CRUD functionality for a table with literally one command ('script/generate scaffold TableName'). Second, Rails has a built-in ORM layer (ActiveRecord) that greatly simplifies everything, in particular because it is very good ORM.

    On one of the Rails pages they talk about a functional website in less times than other frameworks would have you spend on XML situps, and I have to agree. (Excursus: am I the only one who is underwhelmed with XML for application configuration? Apparently not!) Everything depends much less on configuration and much more on convention. This means less code to debug, which means more time to write the really distinctive stuff that was why you were custom-coding an app in the first place.

    Ruby is also a dream come true. The speed of perl, the OO features of python, but without perl's crufty syntax and python's rigidity. Where in the past Ruby was often poorly documented, and sometimes slow and buggy, it has largely overcome these limitations.

    Try rails. You'll like it.

    • by phurley ( 65499 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:56AM (#13790566) Homepage
      I have also been using it -- and love it, but a quick note (not that I think it is that important generally speaking) -- ruby is not as fast as perl. It still uses an interpreted syntax tree, that is not as fast as perl's bytecode interpreter. YARV, should fix this, but it is still development level code.

      Of course having said that, the heavy lifting in ruby (like most scripting languages) is implemented in C, and I rarely have application performance issues with my ruby programs (including but not limited to rails). When there is a performance problem, ruby has very nice benchmarking/profiling tools and a good extension system for writing code in C/C++, so for me this is a non issue.

      • Rails' caching system gets around most performance problems. The templating system allows you to cache partials, which are sub-templates used for recurring page elements. Using slashdot's front page as an example, you could update the fortune at the bottom with every page view and still keep the other expensive-to-generate page elements in cache. This is the primary reason it was beating Java in certain benchmarks.
      • I was actually thinking of "speed" more in terms of development time. With modern hardware, it is the rare application indeed where one needs to worry about speed in terms of execution time. (Not that it can't happen, especially if you use shoddy algorithms, but it's just not the issue it once was.) I've kind of gotten in the habit of worrying almost exclusively about development time, since that's what matters for the code I write.

        I did find the sibling post, regarding Rails' catching, interesting. J

    • (Excursus: am I the only one who is underwhelmed with XML for application configuration? Apparently not!)

      Are you complaining about the amount of meta-data packed into something like struts, or just the fact that it uses XML?

      XML is perfect for this sort of thing IMHO.
      It does bother me that some frameworks put too much of the application into meta-data and less into code.
  • by SwedeGeek ( 545209 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:38AM (#13790433) Homepage Journal

    To anyone who has yet to try Ruby on Rails but refuses to do so because they think it is for speghetti coders, script kiddies, etc., I just have this one comment to make...

    Who do you think the people evangelising RoR are? Do you think they are actually people who have only learned Ruby, so they don't know any better in trying to get other to try it? For some reason, I doubt it... While I don't necessarily have any hard evidence on user profiles, I would suggest such promoters have likely tried more than one programming language and web framework, and are using their own experience to come to the conclusion that RoR is worth at least trying out. Ruby has now been publicly available for 10 years [], but there certainly wasn't much widespread excitement about Ruby in general until RoR came along. There has to be some valid reason for that. If it was really just a mob of script kiddies trying to build the momentum, development firms such as 37signals [] would not be as successful as they have been. Not to mention, the fact that the functionality of the RoR framework has or is being ported to many other languages of late.

    I'm not trying to convince you it's the best thing since sliced bread, but I don't see the logic behind swearing Ruby on Rails off before even looking under the hood for yourself...

  • by toupsie ( 88295 )
    A really poor name for what seems to be a great development environment.
  • Learn Ruby Book (Score:5, Informative)

    by N8F8 ( 4562 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:42AM (#13790463)
    I came across this awesome (actually funny) online book teaching Ruby: why's (poignant) guide to ruby []
  • by bignerdranch ( 783261 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:48AM (#13790496)
    Marcel Molina (one of the Core Ruby on Rails Team members) is teaching a five-day Ruby/Ruby on Rails bootcamp at Big Nerd Ranch, December 5 - 9. []. I work for Big Nerd Ranch, so I'm biased, but I think it is going to be an incredible class. - Aaron Hillegass
  • I've found this guide very useful for Rails on FC4: []. Very thorough.
  • by jazzyfox ( 97118 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:49AM (#13790507)
    One thing that I feel people should keep in mind is that Rails is more than just the scaffolding. After many of the breathless "zero to web in 15 minutes" articles it seems like Rails is no more than a simplistic CRUD framework. While you can go from nothing to a basic app in such a short time, it will be using the Scaffold, which is just that, something to get you started.

    After the first few tutorials I read my impression was almost "that's it?" There demo/article Four Days With Rails [] gives a better view of going beyond the scaffolding, as does the Pragmatic Programmers' rails book.
    • I've just read that Four Days thing and one thing is glaringly missing. You get to write a TODO management application, but there's no security. Anyone can edit, add, change, delete the TODO items.

      So now you want to add security - for simplicity's sake lets suppose you just want you to be able to edit or change anything, and anyone else to be able to view the todo list. How do you add this sort of security framework into a Rails app? I've not seen this done anywhere. Can someone point me to docs that would
      • by fleadope ( 234005 ) <> on Friday October 14, 2005 @12:12PM (#13791225) Homepage
        The developers of Rails are quite clear that they are trying to create a framework for developing a web applications, leaving the actual implementation of all the application logic, including security (or lack thereof!) up to the application developer.
        That being said, I know of at least three secirity implementations being actively worked on and used (in order from least to greatest complexity):

        1) There is a generator on the rails wiki:
        A controller/model/view generator for easily adding authentication, users, and logins to your rails app. ator []

        2) Bruce Perens has just released ModelSecurity:
        ModelSecurity helps Ruby on Rails developers implement a security defense in depth by implementing access control within the data model. []

        3) ActiveRBAC
        The goal of this project is to create a portable, simple but effective RBAC implementation with common User infrastructure and models for Rails. []

        There has also been considerable work done on a component model that will make these even easier to use and extend.

        • I just saw Bruce's post - ModelSecurity looks like the way to go, it implements an awful lot of good stuff.

          I might just get dragged off of Zope - I didn't fancy having to write tons of security/user-authentication stuff.

      • Bruce Perens is working on model security [] for Active Record sponsored by Soucelabs []

      • The Pragmatic Programmers Rails book covers securing an app quite well. They take an unsecure app, and apply authentication and authorization to it. It's a pretty simple process.

        As others have pointed out, Bruce Perens is working on a module to add security at the model level. The standard method is to apply security at the controller level, but applying it lower in the stack helps prevent mistakes from letting data leak out. I'm not sure if it will completely bubble-up to the controller layer though, or if
  • My experience (Score:5, Informative)

    by spludge ( 99050 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:54AM (#13790541)
    I'm a somewhat experienced web developer and I have developed significant applications (1000s users) in Java, .NET and PHP (and a little Perl). I recently tried out Ruby on Rails and, so far, it is by far the best web development environment that I have seen.

    It forces you to create a web application that is done-right(tm). The way it forces you is very insidious. If you create your application and database in a certain way then everything is very simple and easy to do. If you stray outside that way though, then suddenly you have to do so much more work. In this way you are led down the path of least resistance to a good design, and it actually works! Please try it for a week or two before you dismiss this, I was skeptical too :)

    In Java to get the same functionality that I would get for free in rails I might have to use: Ant, XDoclet, Spring, Hibernate (or iBATIS), JUnit, jMock, StrutsTestCase, Canoo's WebTest, Struts Menu, Display Tag Library, OSCache, JSTL and Struts. The amount of configuration that all of those things take is very daunting, and can often have issues. Rails will give you all that functionality (well most of it) for free.

    There *are* problems with with rails. The biggest in my mind is documentation. The wiki sucks. You really have to buy the Agile Web Development With Rails book to learn, but hopefully that will improve. This lack of documentation makes it hard when you want to stray outside of the framework. Rails really needs the equivalent of the PHP documentation with annotated comments.

    Anyways, Rails is here to stay. I'm sure of that now having tried it myself. It feels painful to have to go back and develop in other languages for web development now!
  • Dear Slashdot (Score:4, Insightful)

    by VAXGeek ( 3443 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @10:59AM (#13790592) Homepage
    Dear Slashdot:

                    At this point, I am quite aware of Ruby on Rails. It is agile, the next big thing, etc. Could you possibly link a few more half brewed articles about AJAX, Ruby, and Rails? "Ruby's the next big thing!" "Ruby's hot!" Wow, really?! It certainly has more hype than anything else out there. I think if it was really that good, there would be less people hyped about it and more people actually using it. I've heard about 50000 people say it is the next perl. Of course, with perl6 highly late, who knows what will happen.
  • There are some people out there who might have been led to believe that the fancy AJAX applications currently being built using Ruby on Rails actually require RoR for that degree of rich functionality. Fortunately, this is not true. The AJAX library is called [] and it is available as a standalone JavaScript library.

    It can be used in any language, or even from static web pages. Heck, I practice the unorthodox style of developing web apps in C [] and I'm using it too!
  • I've seen this referenced before:

    script/generate scaffold TableName

    and RoR will generate CRUD stuff for TableName. What happens when the structure of "TableName" changes? Does RoR handle regenerating without overwriting what you've customized?

    BTW, I'm not into RoR, but was planning on doing an interview with someone on RoR for my podcast. The initial interviewee is AWOL, so if any RoR enthusiasts want to talk about this in more detail on a podcast, let me know.

    • Rails looks at the database (not XML files!) to figure out the table structure, so the changes are visible in RoR automatically. You do not have to change anything to make ActiveRecord (RoR's ORM) see the new table structure. It happens automatically.
  • I became a Ruby developer at a financial firm about a month ago. My past expereince had been in PHP for this type of coding - let me say that I am impressed. Not only is it incredibly easy to pick up but you really can create full fledged applications in almost no time. ActiveRecord is what makes it so versitle, and I highly reccomend anyone who hasn't given it a try to actually try it...
  • Time to learn Ruby: 2-4 weeks multiplied by the # of jobs in the (714) MENTIONING Ruby: 10ish (.01) divided by my years as a programmer 8

    Carefactor elevated to 0.016 - get it up to 2 before I learn it on the weekends.

    This is satire, but succinctly explains what I consider, before learning about a new technology.
  • by matchboy ( 519044 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @12:00PM (#13791131) Homepage
    Quite a few people have dismissed Ruby on Rails because they think that it enforces a set of rules about how to structure your database. I am currently writing, Programming Rails [] for O'Reilly and have posted numerous articles on my blog [] on the topic of Rails and Legacy database systems []. Rails can be molded to fit your existing infrastructure with very little effort. It's all I have been using for new projects since last spring... and that was when I started learning Ruby as well.

    PostgreSQL + Ruby + Rails = the next (lamp)

    PRR, RPR, RRP... we need a cool acronym
  • by bADlOGIN ( 133391 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @12:03PM (#13791147) Homepage
    Don't let your Java get run out on a Rail just yet []
    My opinion hasn't changed much since.
  • Instant Rails (Score:5, Informative)

    by matchboy ( 519044 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @12:07PM (#13791187) Homepage
    Curt Hibbs (author of that Rails article) has just released Instant Rails [].

    Instant Rails is a one-stop Rails runtime solution containing Ruby, Rails, Apache, and MySQL, all preconfigured and ready to run. No installer, you simply drop it into the directory of your choice and run it. It does not modify your system environment. []
  • ok. what's the best of breed authorization/authentication model for ruby on rails?
  • by Watts Martin ( 3616 ) <> on Friday October 14, 2005 @12:41PM (#13791458) Homepage
    Google on "ruby on rails is":

    Ruby on Rails is awesome.
    Ruby on Rails is a relatively new Web application framework built on the Ruby language.
    Ruby on Rails is the first startling example of this trend.
    Ruby on Rails is way over hyped.
    Ruby on Rails is finally a bullet point!
    Ruby on Rails is NOT a new programming language.

    And, definitively, from Joel on Software:

    If you don't know whether or not Ruby on Rails is a good tool, give it a try yourself. Most smart people I know love Rails.

    Don't you want to be a smart person?

    [Disclosure: Yes, I actually do like Ruby on Rails from what I've seen. It's fun to bitch about the hype, but most of the bitching is much less well-informed than the hype being bitched about. "If you can't convince me in five minutes that I need to drop everything and learn this, obviously there's no value to it!" Yeah, uh-huh. Some people compensate with fast sportscars, some with Java frameworks, I guess.]
  • Trails: RoR for Java (Score:3, Interesting)

    by otisg ( 92803 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @01:06PM (#13791688) Homepage Journal
    For those using Java and wishing for a RoR-like package for Java, look at Trails - []
    • by irritating environme ( 529534 ) on Friday October 14, 2005 @05:45PM (#13794178)
      Trails was a train wreck of immaturity last time I checked, and the dependencies were ridiculous.

      There is also Grails which is Groovy based, that is probably immature as hell.

      Ruby's main problem is its immaturity, so going with a more immature solution doesn't help. Java for the sake of Java isn't going to help things, but I wish the Grails/Trails people great success. The Java API is extremely valuable, and Ruby's main problems with converting people is the host of apps/APIs (web server, database, etc) above and beyond the language that an enterprise developer will need to learn in order to effectively use it.
  • I'm using Rails for a project I've been working on for a month. It's better than anything I've used, but I can still see some room for improvement.

    I've seen mention of a few alternatives that look quite interesting. In particular, TurboGears [] and Django [] for the Python crowd, and Nitro [] as another Ruby platform. Others exist for other languages. (I don't know if anyone has exactly defined what makes a system Rails-like; it seems to be one of those things that you can identify without being able to easily descr

If I had only known, I would have been a locksmith. -- Albert Einstein