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Archive for the ‘Ruby’ Category

If, like me, you are interested in Diaspora, then you should know about the site Diasporial. If you don’t know what Diaspora is, just think of it as a decentralized, privacy-conscious, non-commercial, open-sourced version of Facebook. At least, that’s what the creators and developers of Diaspora are aiming for; the current version is still dubbed “alpha”, but quite workable.

There are already multiple “pods” available  to try Diaspora for yourself; visit http://podupti.me (did you notice the “pod uptime”?) and choose a pod to sign up.

I suppose good mobile client software for Diaspora will appear eventually, once the application is more finished – and I hope that will be sooner rather than later.

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What Ruby? Mirah!

These days, at least in Europe, the word ‘Ruby’ is mostly associated with the frolicking of Italy’s prime minister, and not with the programming language of the same name. From the diminishing number of news items on the Ruby Inside news site I deduce that the language has reached a mature and stable state – which is good, really!

But that doesn’t mean that people like Charles Nutter just sit back. Charles took the Ruby syntax and used it to define Mirah, a JVM programming language that looks a lot like Ruby (but isn’t Ruby nor JRuby). What does it look like? Well, check out the intro that Charles wrote for DDJ: “Language of the Month: Mirah“. It’s a most interesting effort, and apparently Mirah can even be used to develop apps for Google App Engine and Android.

Of course, I also have to mention the fact that the Mirah site contains a Wiki, written in… Mirah, of course. Nothing fancy, but if that bothers you, just grab the code and make it better!

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Roll On. JRuby is out. I have always wanted to try out the Ruby language as well as Ruby on Rails, the web application framework. As someone pointed out, having JRuby around means that there must be a way to grab the generated Java code and deploying that as a WAR ile to any Java application server. Just that feature alone might be what’s needed to make Rails apps even more popular – especially within enterprises that are not so fond of anything but Java apps on their servers. So here’s what neede to get started on that path: Get JRuby onto the Rails on Mac OS X.

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Too Soon For Conclusions? Graeme has written an interesting Grails vs. Rails Benchmark article. Somehow, my gut feeling says that it is still too soon to draw more or less definitive conclusions from these data… but it’s a start, and it is good to see that Grails is certainly already “good enough” for many applications.

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Trying To Do ORM? Reread This! Rereading is what I’ll do, but even after reading only half of this I’m pretty sure many of Joe Rhineharts comments on Rails are right on the mark. No, that doesn’t mean that Rails is bad; it means that Rails is not always the best choice for application development – now there’s news for you, no ;-? Anyway, the best part is indeed all those snippets of wisdom on how a good ORM layer should behave… And then there’s all the rest, on Controllers and Actions, etc.

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The Debates Continue… Here are a few topics I’m more or less following:

… But Feed The Right Wolf. Debating is quite OK with mee, but let’s keep it polite and to the point. I found a small but wholly appropriate story while cleaning up my mailbox – here’s a link to a version in English: Two Wolves

Een oude indiaan neemt zijn kleinkinderen op de schoot. Hij zegt: “Er woedt een strijd diep in mezelf. Een strijd tussen twee wolven. Eén wolf staat voor vreugde, vrede, hoop, gulheid, nederigheid, vriendelijkheid, empathie, sereniteit en vriendschap. De andere wolf representeert afgunst, woede, verdriet, hebzucht, ego, zelfmedelijden, schuld, minderwaardigheid, arrogantie en angst. Die strijd tussen de twee wolven woedt ook bij jullie”, sprak de indiaan, “elke dag weer.” De kinderen laten dit even bezinken, tot uiteindelijk één van hen vraagt: “En wie van de twee wolven haalt het?” Antwoordt die indiaan: “De wolf die je het meeste voedt?…”

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Attention: Commercial Message. Does this clip on YouTube mean I’m obliged to start using Ruby and Rails? Nah… Is it a philosophical statement worth repeating? Nah… But there is, at least to my eyes, indeed a similarity in the way that 37 Signals and Apple Computer approach software design (at least for some/most of their software): the end result has to be simple to use. In that sense, I can understand David Heinemeier Hanssons statement that without the Mac he might not have comtemplated building Rails.

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