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Do you remember Ruby and Ruby on Rails?

http://www.tiobe.com/index.php/paperinfo/tpci/Ruby.html

The language seems to be wavering...

And besides the tiobe index, I don't hear as much discussion about Ruby lang.
Permalink Waverly 
May 17th, 2010 11:49pm
I don't know anyone still using Ruby for scripting.  Most have moved up to Python.  Some have moved back to compiled languages for performance...of course the use cases for compiled vs. scripting are different in my mind.
Permalink Mr. X 
May 18th, 2010 12:07am
Good, I like working on obsolete and obscure technology.
Permalink Ducknald Don 
May 18th, 2010 3:21am
That's a good point, I will have to keep an ear out for any Ruby discussion now. Now it's been mentioned, I don't recall hearing much of it recently.

I wonder what happened? Amazing it can go from nothing to top of the charts (and back again) in such a short space of time, especially when so many people seemed to love it so much. Where did all the Ruby fans go?

Did it collapse under the weight of its own hype?
Permalink brone 
May 18th, 2010 8:07am
I think the main problem is that people started to realize that Rails is only good for basic CRUD forms, and it begins to break down once you actually add logic to that CRUD.  If you have a lot of business rules, then Rails ain't the best of choices because it espouses this simplified stuff (and many of the Rails guys would basically say that having a lot of business rules is "doing it wrong").

That and the hype.  37Signals hyped the fuck out of Rails like it was the second coming of Jesus and the greatest thing to ever be created, and a lot of bandwagon jumpers fell for it and started evangelizing Rails to everyone and anyone. 

I think another problem with it was that it was always changing, at like a lightspeed pace.  I know MY whole problem with it was every time I'd find a way to do something well, there would be dozens of blog posts from the Rails cognoscenti saying how that way sucks, here's a better way using some other obscure or brand new tool (e.g. Git, RSpec, Cucumber, Passenger, the list goes on) that some other Ruby guy whipped together because it's "too hard" to do it the old way, and all the big name Rails guys would jump on that and start evangelizing that as the new way of writing software.

Rails is/was basically like fast food.  If you're in a hurry it's fine, but it's not much more than quick fix.
Permalink WayneM. 
May 18th, 2010 8:18am
Really the only reason I would still use Rails is because of Heroku with it's trivial deployment and FREE 5MB sites that you can have as many as you want.  Otherwise, I'd use PHP or .NET or something that's useful in the long term to businesses.
Permalink WayneM. 
May 18th, 2010 8:19am
One more thing:  IMO the only "awesome" concept that Rails has that makes it "better" than anything else is the concept of Migrations.  That was pretty cool and sure beats updating a single SQL file or trying to figure out a batch way to run multiple SQL files in a particular order.  I still don't see anything like that for PHP, Python, Java or .NET
Permalink WayneM. 
May 18th, 2010 8:50am
Ruby's lost its "cool" vibe.
Permalink Kenny 
May 18th, 2010 8:55am
Migrations are a perfect Rubyism -- nothing wrong with that but I like to have *a lot* more control.
Permalink Wayne 
May 18th, 2010 11:50am
I use ruby as my every day scripting tools of choice. Never cared much for rails though. Of course, menial day-in-day-out scripting tasks don't usually require a lot of performance.

As to not hearing a lot of discussion about it recently, here is a list of other tech that's not being discussed recently: c, python, linux, oracle db, c#/.net, vim vs. emacs, compilers ... I don't think compilers are going out of fashion just because they're not top of reddit.

I'm going to Euruko the weekend after next, it was sold out in a day.

That said, I'm not too passionate about whether it's really popular or not, 'cause it flows well for me for the tasks I use it for.
Permalink Send private email a2800276 
May 18th, 2010 11:52am
>One more thing:  IMO the only "awesome" concept that Rails
>has that makes it "better" than anything else is the concept
>of Migrations.  That was pretty cool and sure beats updating
>a single SQL file or trying to figure out a batch way to run
>multiple SQL files in a particular order.  I still don't see
>anything like that for PHP, Python, Java or .NET

Django has South, which kicks fucking ass.

Django is basically a better rails in most respects.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
May 18th, 2010 12:00pm
I'm still fond of Pascal.

Oh, I'm sorry, I thought this was "Language Wars".
Permalink SaveTheHubble 
May 18th, 2010 12:25pm
Remember Ruby, sure do. I use it and I like it.
Remember Rails. Cool for small things but I don't use it much.

One can fully use Ruby without using Rails. Ruby went mainstream and the hype died down.
Permalink caper 
May 18th, 2010 1:18pm
>>Django has South, which kicks fucking ass.
>>Django is basically a better rails in most respects.

I'll have to check that then.  I did some minor looking at Django but Rails seemed to have a better community behind it, albeit one that constantly changes their opinions and is a little too focused on hiding things behind "magic", so I went with that at the time. 

Django (and Python in general) does seem a little better just due to the nature of it; it doesn't seem like it gets in the way - you still have to tell it what you want without using magic abstractions, so you still feel "in control".  Rails felt too much like "paint by numbers" programming; I can end up with a masterpiece as long as I stay in the lines and follow the instructions, but if I don't like the way the artwork looks, I can't change it without having to do it all myself.  In contrast, Django felt more like an experienced painter offering you suggestions on what works best and guiding you towards the right direction, but leaving it up to you and nodding if you decide to change.
Permalink WayneM. 
May 18th, 2010 1:58pm
I do enjoy Ruby a lot, mainly because of the concise way of writing code.  The blocks, for instance, are really good, and the way you can chain some things together naturally. 

Really though, I think Python > Ruby since it's just as good, is more widespread and is a bit more expressive as far as giving you total control.  And the whole whitespace indentation thing is kinda neat too.
Permalink WayneM. 
May 18th, 2010 2:00pm
One more thing.  The only real downside to Python (and this goes for Ruby, Rails and Django too) is that the "average" business isn't likely to use it.  It's still largely the domain of startups and larger corporations that may use it for some internal things (scripts, for instance).

The vast majority of average small and midsize businesses are much more likely to be using PHP (or .NET but PHP is more comparative to Ruby and Python) than Python or Ruby.
Permalink WayneM. 
May 18th, 2010 2:05pm
Having spent some time working on a Java web app I find it quite hard to criticise Rails, it isn't perfect but it's a lot better than dealing with J2EE.
Permalink Ducknald Don 
May 18th, 2010 2:19pm
That's not high praise, all comparisons with Java end up the same way.
Permalink Wayne 
May 18th, 2010 3:02pm
>I'll have to check that then.  I did some minor looking at
>Django but Rails seemed to have a better community behind
>it, albeit one that constantly changes their opinions and
>is a little too focused on hiding things behind "magic",
>so I went with that at the time. 
>
>Django (and Python in general) does seem a little better
>just due to the nature of it; it doesn't seem like it gets
>in the way - you still have to tell it what you want
>without using magic abstractions, so you still feel "in
>control".  Rails felt too much like "paint by numbers"
>programming; I can end up with a masterpiece as long as I
>stay in the lines and follow the instructions, but if I
>don't like the way the artwork looks, I can't change it
>without having to do it all myself.  In contrast, Django
>felt more like an experienced painter offering you
>suggestions on what works best and guiding you towards the
>right direction, but leaving it up to you and nodding if
>you decide to change.

That's 100% spot on, and pretty much the exact reason I chose to learn it. I liked the *idea* of rails, but I didn't like its "magic". Django is in many ways rails done right.

Plus python kicks ruby's ass.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
May 18th, 2010 6:49pm
>One more thing.  The only real downside to Python (and this
>goes for Ruby, Rails and Django too) is that the "average"
>business isn't likely to use it.

I consider that an advantage. You might not be able to find work as easily, but the work you do get will be at saner businesses and will probably be paid more.

I'd rather hold out for a decent django job at a decent company than take a php or rails job at the next VC dependent marketing startup that will likely go under in a year or two.

I've a strong aversion to taking work at businesses that I know will go under even if it's well paid. It's just too depressing knowing that your work will never amount to much.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
May 18th, 2010 6:55pm
Actually I've done zend+php at the BBC and it wasn't that horrible. Their tech has improved markedly since the old days.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
May 18th, 2010 6:56pm
Actually I've done zend+php at the BBC and it wasn't that horrible.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
May 18th, 2010 6:57pm
Zend looks really appealing to me (considering PHP because there are actual jobs that want it) because it's really a framework, not as constricting as Rails.  Symfony looks really good too but is a little heavier.
Permalink WayneM. 
May 18th, 2010 7:02pm
Zend is not just a framework, it's a commitment.
Permalink Aaron 
May 18th, 2010 8:19pm
Pardon my ignorance but what the hell does that mean?
Permalink WayneM. 
May 18th, 2010 8:49pm
That very likely you'll wind up structuring your code around how Zend does things to more of an extent than you would with some other frameworks.

Admittedly, it's highly likely that you'd rip a framework out of any site and replace it, but it's entirely possible to use  a different framework, want to add a 3rd party library, and discover that library depends in turn on Zend.  I've seen that happen, but cannot recall specifics.
Permalink Aaron 
May 18th, 2010 9:18pm
Wouldn't that be the case with any library though? I mean, if RoR had a library that did something specific that you wanted, the chances are it wouldn't be able to live without its friends even if strictly speaking *should* be able to.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
May 19th, 2010 5:45am
Any library ripped from a framework that is...
Permalink Send private email Colm 
May 19th, 2010 5:45am
I thought the benefit of ZF was that it WASN'T a true framework but more a collection of libraries, so you didn't have to use the entire thing (as opposed to Rails or Django where it's a whole package)?  For instance, I thought that I could use the Zend database stuff without using anything else?

That was the whole appeal of ZF to me as far as learning a PHP framework - the fact that it could easily replace parts of and old crufty legacy PHP without forcing an entire rewrite to fit the application inside a framework's constraints; if the DB access sucks you could refactor to introduce ZF's database abstractions but you don't have to just scrap everything.
Permalink WayneM. 
May 19th, 2010 7:53am
Oh. Maybe. I didn't spend an awfully long time using it, tbh.
Permalink Send private email Colm 
May 19th, 2010 9:52am

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