Friday, March 11, 2005

Tipping My Toe In Ruby Again

I've been playing around with Ruby again. It's nice to get a different perspective on things and the Ruby community shares a lot in common with us Smalltalkers. But, they are also different. Sure, we all love dynamic languages and know we're more productive. But, is there anything to learn from them? You bet! For one, they have an infatuation with blocks that leads to some cool designs and succint solutions! They also have philosophy that is pragmatic and to keep things simple. There's a lot of youth and excitement there as well. I'm having fun just playing around. One of the things that caught me off guard is not to have config files consist of data, but make them living code as well. So instead of some boring XML (or YAML) file, why not just use Ruby? The distinction of runtime and compile time is not there, so why have a data file? Make it executable and alive! It's one of those, "Gosh, well, YEAH! Why not?!!" It made me think of all the places we use static information when we can have objects that are alive. Anyway, I'll report more as I continue playing. I've known Ruby for awhile, but haven't really played with it in awhile. I think a lot of Rubyists would love Smalltalk if they gave it a chance.

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