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Why I want a Ruby version of <Project-X>

4 replies on 1 page. Most recent reply: Dec 15, 2007 8:09 AM by Eric Armstrong

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Eric Armstrong

Posts: 207
Nickname: cooltools
Registered: Apr, 2003

Why I want a Ruby version of <Project-X> (View in Weblogs)
Posted: Dec 13, 2007 3:38 PM
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Summary
In this case, it's why I want a Ruby version of Drupal. There are some good reasons that apply in the general case...
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Josh Huckabee created a really great piece of flypaper with his blog on Drupal and Ruby on Rails. I landed there, and just had to comment. In it, he wondered why someone would be searching on a combination of those two terms. This was my response...

I, too, searched on "Ruby and Drupal", and landed on your page. I'm guessing that my goal is the same as that of many other searchers--finding a CMS with many of Drupal's terrific features, but implemented in Ruby.

These are my reasons for looking for a Ruby-based implementation. They can probably be applied by just about anyone with a language preference to just about any project:

  • Capability: Ruby is powerful, and applications written in it can be extended in interesting ways, including adding to existing classes without rewriting them, and construction of useful domain-languages to solve domain-specific problems.

  • Familiarity: It takes a lot of time to learn a language and become seriously proficient at it. Ruby is pretty unique in that it can be used for day-to-day scripting and for serious applications. That makes it reasonable to think of it as possibly the "one language to bind them all", so you can spend your time getting seriously proficient in one language, rather than acquiring a surface familiarity with many. (Each has its own rewards, but real mastery lets you do so much more.)

  • Confidence: Any extensions you want to make will most likely require extensive refactoring. Otherwise, they probably would already be implemented. Given the near-inevitability of wanting to do something along those lines eventually, it makes sense to look for an implementation that is written in a language you are familiar with, which you know to be powerful enough to do anything you might ever want to do, so can undertake the task with confidence.

Hopefully, that helps to explain why folks keep finding your page after a search. BTW: I'm grateful for the pointers to Mephisto and Radiant CMS. Apparently, they are somewhat equivalent to Drupal, so they're worth a strong look. (In return, I felt I owed you a semi-choherent explanation!)
:_)


Josh Huckabee

Posts: 1
Nickname: jhuckabee
Registered: Dec, 2007

Re: Why I want a Ruby version of <Project-X> Posted: Dec 13, 2007 7:52 PM
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Another one you might check out is RailFrog (railfrog.com). They were originally touting RailFrog as Drupal in Ruby on Rails, but I can't seem to find that claim on their website anymore.

Of the three, Radiant seems to be the most active in terms of development, but Mephisto gets more use.

I stick with Drupal for my personal projects for ease of deployment, active community involvement, and the huge number of modules that you can find for it.

Kay Schluehr

Posts: 302
Nickname: schluehk
Registered: Jan, 2005

Re: Why I want a Ruby version of <Project-X> Posted: Dec 13, 2007 11:36 PM
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You might convert PHP into Ruby and than start refactoring Drupal from within Ruby :)

* PHP is a rather simple scripting language. Discussions about its pitfalls come up from time to time but even those are well documented [1][2]. Since PHP doesn't have sophisticated features it can therefore be mapped onto a Ruby library.

* Zends C libraries are open source and pretty generic. Creation of bindings shall not take the effort of wrapping a few thousand API functions individually.

[1] http://zestyping.livejournal.com/124503.html
[2] http://www.php.net/manual/en/types.comparisons.php

Eric Armstrong

Posts: 207
Nickname: cooltools
Registered: Apr, 2003

Re: Why I want a Ruby version of <Project-X> Posted: Dec 15, 2007 8:06 AM
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> Another one you might check out is RailFrog
> (railfrog.com). They were originally touting RailFrog as
> Drupal in Ruby on Rails, but I can't seem to find that
> claim on their website anymore.
>
> Of the three, Radiant seems to be the most active in terms
> of development, but Mephisto gets more use.
>
> I stick with Drupal for my personal projects for ease of
> deployment, active community involvement, and the huge
> number of modules that you can find for it.
>
Thanks for the pointer. RailFrog does look interesting. And thanks for the characterizations of the other two. It makes sense for you to stick with Drupal. Familiarity dominates the equation, I think. Either it does what you want, or you're familiar enough with the language to extend it when you need to. Either way, you've gotta go with what works!

Thanks for the follow up.

Eric Armstrong

Posts: 207
Nickname: cooltools
Registered: Apr, 2003

Re: Why I want a Ruby version of <Project-X> Posted: Dec 15, 2007 8:09 AM
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> You might convert PHP into Ruby and than start refactoring
> Drupal from within Ruby :)
>
Great thoughts! My chops and available time aren't up to it, but it sure sounds like a hecka-good project for some ambitious individual. A PHP DSL in Ruby would be a powerful tool, indeed.

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