Thursday, 30 November 2006

A Rails feature a day keeps J2EE away !

Still waiting for my users to comment on the specs I sent them, I started to do some data modelling in PowerDesigner to define the structure of my soon-to be Rails App.
As I was modelling, suddenly I remembered about the magic field names of ActiveRecord and especially the Single table inheritance thingy. This is cool, way cool. That really tickles the brain cells. I think this is where the O in ORM really speaks.
So I added this concept to my data model and just before I left work, made a printout, gave it to one of my colleagues [for external eye on the problem] and whilst I was doing the 5 mins pitch on the model, he got stuck on the "single table inheritance" and instantly was seduced by its elegance...

Evangelisation 1 - J2EE 0 !

Tuesday, 28 November 2006

Rails in the doorstep...

A couple of months ago, I started investigating how I could get Ruby On Rails into the door of my Company. We are a J2EE house, with strong Oracle culture, so RoR is rather disruptive.

I bought a few books on the topic (Enterprise Integration with Ruby, From Java to Ruby: Things Every Manager Should Know) and it got me thinking about a strategy that may work.
a) evangelizing: make sure my fellow developers hear about Ruby over and over, even if it is just to joke about it.
b) pick a good greenfield project to prove Ruby On Rails can have a positive impact for certain well chosen projects.

a) is easy. Rails talks to my brain cells, it makes me happy so I want to talk about it.
b) is more difficult. If I fail to pick the correct project, and fail to deliver, RoR is probably smoked at my workplace.

2 weeks later, opportunity knocks on the door. YADB (Yet Another database) request. This is my shot. A project that looks "greenfield" enough, I'll take it, on top of the rest, to prove my case. Basically the idea is to replace a big spreadsheet into which users are inputting info coming from another system.

First: analysis of requirements. This is now done, it took 1 long meeting, a couple more to write the report and now I am awaiting the user coments...