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Ovid (2709)

Ovid
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http://publius-ovidius.livejournal.com/
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Stuff with the Perl Foundation. A couple of patches in the Perl core. A few CPAN modules. That about sums it up.

Journal of Ovid (2709)

Thursday April 14, 2005
10:39 AM

Too many Perl Mongers

[ #24187 ]

Last night's Perl Monger's meeting was fantastic. I stopped counting attendees at about 50. We usually have a good crowd, but this was astonishing. The reason? A Ruby On Rails presentation. The regular leader, Josh Heumann, was absent as it was his girlfriend's birthday, so I ran the show. Rather than the usual task of having everyone introduce themselves -- we would have been there all night -- I asked for a show of hands from the Rubyists. Many hands shot skyward. I then asked for a show of hands from the Mongers. Many hands shot skyward. However, we were outnumbered by the Ruby folk. I couldn't believe it. We probably had more Ruby programmers present than there were Ruby jobs available in the entire city.

It's my understanding that the local Ruby groups usually only have about three or four people showing up at their meetings, but I think last night was exceptional because of all of the buzz surrounding Rails. In fact, two of the people there were employed as full time Rails developers -- in different shops.

What? You're not familiar with Ruby on Rails? In less than a year (it was released in July 2004), it has become one of the most hyped Web application frameworks available, and for good reason. This is Ruby's killer app and, I humbly predict, if anything gives Ruby serious traction in programming circles, Rails is it. Heck, it's already doing it. A number of the Rubyists said they had just started Ruby because of Rails. From what we saw last night, I don't blame them. It only took a couple of minutes to develop a basic CRUD app. A few minutes later (with some stumbling), it was converted to an AJAX application. A couple of minutes later, the SOAP WSDL interface was up and running. It doesn't matter what the suits think of Java (or Perl, for that matter), when they see the speed of development here, they're going to sit up and pay attention. Ruby has really arrived.

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  • It would be terrific if you could take Catalyst (on CPAN) out for a spin and see how it compares to Rails, Ovid -- I haven't tried it myself but I've been hearing some great things about it.
  • We probably had more Ruby programmers present than there were Ruby jobs available in the entire city.

    You probably had more Ruby people than there were Ruby jobs available on the planet :-)

    Unfortunately. Really like the language.

  • Tom Moertel at the Pittsburgh Perl Mongers gave a short presentation about Ruby and Rails on Wednesday too, but no Ruby people were there. (I'm sure they exist in Pittsburgh; maybe they hang out at Carnegie Mellon?) I expect when he gets his talk online it'll be here [moertel.com].
  • I hear a lot about it, but I have yet to look. Is there anything about Rails that can intrinsically only be done in Ruby, though? (I doubt it, obviously.)
    • Not really, but Ruby's reflection support is very sweet, which makes frameworks like Rails much easier.
      It's popularity also benefits much from implicit invocants and stuff like that.
      • So basically it’s saying “hurry up with Perl6 if you want a piece of the pie, guys?“
        • We managed to bypass most of Perl5's limitations for Catalyst, so it's already fun to use.

          But Perl6 would definately solve most (maybe all) of our problems, but it's not just Perl6, Cat is quite useless without mod_perl and modules like TT2 and (C)DBI...

          So i guess it will take some time to get Perl6 in the game...
  • This is Ruby's killer app and, I humbly predict, if anything gives Ruby serious traction in programming circles, Rails is it.

    There's also a slightly less well known app that's pushing Ruby into industry - and that's WATIR [io.com] - a really nice Ruby testing framework for driving IE on windows boxes.

    WATIR has been the tipping point for many people I've come across, especially testers, to start playing with the language. And once it's in the acceptance test it quickly migrates into the rest of the organisati