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Enjoying Rails Underground 2009 - Day 2

Posted by Bernd Ahlers on Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Following Felix’s summary for day 1 of Rails Underground, here are my highlights
of day 2.

The day started pretty early with Yehuda Katz’s keynote about Rails3 and interfaces in Ruby general. Really nice talk! Yehuda is working full-time on Rails and did some great refactoring for version 3. I’m looking forward to the new major release. video

For the next talk I decided to attend Ben Scofield’s presentation about Rack integration in Rails. Rack acts as the glue between webservers for Ruby and Ruby web frameworks. Ben showed how Rack works and lots of nice ways to work with it. (like some middleware projects) I will definately dig a bit deeper into Rack. Really nice!
slide video

Pat Allan gave a nice talk about sharing your knowledge with other people or using your knowledge to help people. He gave some examples like giving guest lectures at universities (Teach the stuff you’d like to have learned at the university.), organizing meetings in your local area or doing charity work in other countries. Pat himself did charity work in Cambodia for three months and helped local organizations with their websites. Awesome!

There also was a Q&A panel with Obie Fernandez, Jim Weirich, Jonathan Siegel and David Heinemeier Hansson. Unfortunately David didn’t attend the conference personally but was only connected via video link. That was a bit weird and I didn’t really liked that. Not that many questions from the audience but some interesting discussions between the panel members.

Lindsay Holmwood talked about Behaviour driven monitoring with cucumber-nagios. This was really inspiring and is a cool way of doing regression tests for your websites. Thinking a bit further, this can not only be used for websites, but also to test other types of services, like asterisk (checking your dialplan, for example) or smtp sessions testing your mail addresses or mail routing. He also mentioned his own monitoring tool flapjack which he’s currently writing. I’ll give it a try soon!

It’s a bit sad that I missed Jim Weirich’s talk about object oriented programming stuff but I hope there will be slides and a video.

All in all, Rails Underground was a really nice conference. Thanks to the organizers, speakers and all people who made it happen.

We’ll come back next year!

Oh, I almost forgot that I won a Ruby In Practice book at the book-lottery. YAY! :)