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Ruby in the Real World™

 
 
John
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      08-23-2005
I am as enthusiastic about Ruby as the next programmer, but I have been
discouraged in the corporate world so far. I've been able to use Ruby
to whip up impressively fast multithreaded web crawlers, data
processing scripts, and other little tools for myself... but overall it
seems like people just don't want to let it gain any sort of foothold
in the "real world."

Has anybody been able to use Ruby in an important system in their
organization? A real integral system? Maybe Ruby on Rails for a
corporate web site or store?

 
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Bil Kleb
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      08-23-2005
John wrote:
> Has anybody been able to use Ruby in an important system in their
> organization? A real integral system? Maybe Ruby on Rails for a
> corporate web site or store?


Google revealed two pages you might be interested in:

http://wiki.rubyonrails.com/rails/show/RealWorldUsage

http://www.rubygarden.org/ruby?RealWorldRuby

Regards,
--
Bil, http://fun3d.larc.nasa.gov
 
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Alex Nedelcu
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      08-23-2005
Hi John,

I am also a beginner in Ruby. And I am going to be honest with you.
Ruby is not that popular. There aren't many enterprises and programers
that are interested in Ruby.

Companies are interested in things prooven, things that just work.
Platforms like Java. And no matter how productive Ruby or how many
predictions you hear from David Hansson (Ruby on Raills inventor), Ruby
doesn't have an industrial strength VM and it doesn't have tools (and
somehow I doubt that YARV is going to make it).

Of course, in time it will have have tools and a good VM if the
community stays focused.
And, furthermore, if you compare it with Perl and Python and PHP, it's
the language with the least design flaws.

Oh yes, it's a beautifull language that makes us productive and it does
have a future. You concernes are justified, but Ruby is one of those
languages that change the way you think. And it does have a future.

 
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Phil Tomson
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      08-23-2005
In article <(E-Mail Removed) .com>,
Alex Nedelcu <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>Hi John,
>
>I am also a beginner in Ruby. And I am going to be honest with you.
>Ruby is not that popular. There aren't many enterprises and programers
>that are interested in Ruby.


Ummmm... I would have said the same thing 4.5 years ago when I started
using Ruby... But now it actually seems to me that Ruby is making huge
inroads and is gaining lots of mindshare - mostly due to Rails at this
point.

Just look at some of the recent events that point to Ruby's rise in
popularity:
* DHH wins best hacker award for Rails (remember Rails is written in Ruby)
* Ruby talks at OSCON are well attended (anecdote: I went downtown to a
restaurant near where OSCON was being held and ran into a couple of guys
who were wearing OSCON badges. I asked them what they were into and they
said Perl [one of them was giving a Perl talk, even]. they asked what I
was into and I said Ruby and the one giving the Perl talk said something
like "if I didn't have to use Perl at work I'd be using Ruby!" and then
proceeded to tell the other guy how great Ruby is)
* The first Rails book seems to be a big seller (what, 7 or 8 thousand in
about a month?)
* lots more newbies here on clr lately
* Ruby on CodeZoo
* ActiveState making noises about Ruby support

.... lots more I'm sure.


>
>Companies are interested in things prooven, things that just work.
>Platforms like Java. And no matter how productive Ruby or how many
>predictions you hear from David Hansson (Ruby on Raills inventor), Ruby
>doesn't have an industrial strength VM and it doesn't have tools (and
>somehow I doubt that YARV is going to make it).


Why so pessimistic? YARV seems to be making steady progress. You can
already run 1.9 with YARV (to some extent).

>
>Of course, in time it will have have tools and a good VM if the
>community stays focused.
>And, furthermore, if you compare it with Perl and Python and PHP, it's
>the language with the least design flaws.
>
>Oh yes, it's a beautifull language that makes us productive and it does
>have a future. You concernes are justified, but Ruby is one of those
>languages that change the way you think. And it does have a future.
>


definitely, the future actually looks very bright.


Phil

 
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gregarican
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      08-23-2005
Alex Nedelcu wrote:

> I am also a beginner in Ruby. And I am going to be honest with you.
> Ruby is not that popular. There aren't many enterprises and programers
> that are interested in Ruby.


In the Western world Ruby isn't one of the most visible language,
granted. But I have read that in Asia (esp. Japan) it's more popular
than either Perl or Python. I do think that there are increasingly more
and more programmers interested in Ruby. Especially since Rails will
help boost Ruby's visibility.

Perhaps there are not many enterprise level corporate entities looking
to have Ruby replace their entire toolset. But some are likely looking
to add Ruby to their environment in one capacity or another. I have for
the smaller company I work for, as indicated on some of the pages
mentioned in this thread.

In terms of commercial applications I don't see native Ruby code having
much impact outside of smaller open source projects. Since it's a
scripting language it would be (next to) technically impossible to have
it closed source unless there was some super-secret compiler used to
eliminate the source code.

 
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Alex Nedelcu
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      08-23-2005
Yes, it is definitelly winning mindshare. And of course it's Rails
fault. Web programming matters most right now. But it will take some
time before it is accepted.

IMHO, one step to it would be for the Ruby comunity to have better
debuging tools and to implement bridges for interoperability with
java/.net. PHP gained a lot of credibility with the Zend Platform (not
that I actually heard of someone using it, but still, you know it is
available if you need it).

 
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John
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      08-23-2005

Alex Nedelcu wrote:
> Yes, it is definitelly winning mindshare. And of course it's Rails
> fault. Web programming matters most right now. But it will take some
> time before it is accepted.


Yeah, it seems that for most of the l33t h4x0rs that do know about
Ruby, they only know "Ruby" as 1/3 of the title of "Ruby on Rails." I
am far more interested in the numerous other applications of Ruby
(distributed computing, rapid development, straight CGI, and WEBrick
itself) than Ruby on Rails. While it is great, and I did spend the 5
minutes it takes to learn it, I want to see Ruby as an option for
things beyond web applications in the business world.

Sticking with Microsoft languages and IDEs doesn't make anybody's life
any better, except for the night school IT grads.

 
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Oliver Plohmann
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      08-24-2005
Hello,

the situation of Ruby reminds me somehow of Smalltalk earlier. You
always had to reason why you were using Smalltalk and not C++, which
was a bit tedious. Then came Java ... I don't understand why former
Smalltalk vendors and all those people that made good money with
selling Smalltalk systems don't jump onto Ruby now and make use of its
momentum. There are still no competitiors around and so it's just the
right time to jump into the Ruby market. With the use of eclipse it
would't be that hard to develop a very nice IDE for Ruby. Without a
decent IDE many people wouldn't look at it seriously. I know that many
former Smalltalk people look at Ruby as a replacement for their
Smalltalk that has almost disappeared. But without a decent IDE with a
class hierarchy browser it's not fun and fun is what it is about to a
large extent when using dynamically typed languages.

Regads, Oliver

 
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Alex Nedelcu
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      08-24-2005
Hi Oliver,
Java practically had no competition. Because no matter how you look at
it, it is not right to tie the IDE to the platform. Also, multiple
incompatible implementations, and the portabilitty in Smaltalk that was
just bogus (before Java portability was a joke). And the fact that
Smaltalk is too dynamic. That hasn't looked to well at the time, and
things haven't changed much.
And if something replaces Ruby, it will be a better Ruby, because right
now it's more about the joy of programming with Ruby, and not the
money.
Just my oppinion.

 
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Trans
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