Posted on Jan 13, 2009

Ruby: This is what I call a community

I’ll like to say this is what I like of Ruby: it’s community.

No matter if you’re running on Windows, Linux, OSX, an esoteric version of Unix, you can still count with support1

Well, skipping for a second the zealots of platforms, I’ll like to comment on two things that happened in the past days.

Pure-Ruby Zlib

Daniel Berger started a bounty to workaround a issue with zlib building and working with Visual C++ 8.0

The full thread is here at ruby-talk.

While his work on getting a working Ruby on VC8 overlaps our work on MinGW build, the bounty will not only benefit him in the quest but the whole Ruby community.

A couple of days, when I thought the bounty was not attracting attention, 2 participants showed interest.

Both developers came with different approaches to the problem and one goal: contribute back.

To quote Charles own words:

Thanks Luis, but never mind, it was more about the challenge, and also supporting the effort to ease problems on windows. I primarily use ruby on windows, and make use of the fruits of your (one click installer), and daniel berger’s (win32 process, sys-*, et al) labors every day (at work that is :). Props to you guys for making ruby on windows usable…

I don’t need to add anything else, or should I?

Keep trying Windows configurations.

I know, I know, this can be a bit biased (hint: I use Windows), but Fabio Akita did it again:

The Best Environment for Rails on Windows

First he published that in Portuguese, and after several comments he got convinced there was a market for a translation.

The tips for gVim setup are great, which is a nice way to share with the community how you can get productive without dumping your whole setup, going to a memory and wallet blown IDE or dumping your computer for a Mac.

What is the point?

I know Fabio and he is a Mac user. Even so, he is pretty aware that there are users that cannot afford get a Mac, or cannot switch to Linux environments. He took the time to write not one but two posts covering details on how you can be productive on Windows for doing Ruby and Rails development.

This is the example on how the community is great around the language, and that a few opinionated developers and their statements are not the way to measure the attitude of the community.

Got it?


And for those who complain about gems not install properly on Windows, send the gem author to rake-compiler and tell them they no longer have an excuse.

1 ruby-talk support, ruby-core still shows some communication problems.

1 Comment

  • Ruby, partly because of Rails, partly because of the productivity gain from the language, is gaining acceptance in the enterprise. And mostly that means Windows. So the more and better support the Windows community get, the stronger the overall case for Ruby in the enterprise becomes. Of course, I have to develop on Windows and deploy to Linux, which makes life interesting, but who wants to be bored!