Forum: Ruby What do you want to see for my Prawn (Ruby Mendicant) talk at RubyConf?

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Gregory B. (Guest)
on 2008-10-31 17:45
(Received via mailing list)
Hey,

In the spirit of Ruby Manor[0], I'm asking for feedback on what people
would like to see in my RubyConf talk[1],
which will be on Saturday November 8th, just after lunch (1:15).

I've got some things I definitely want to share, but I am reserving up
to half of my talk for suggested topics.  I can easily fill that time
if necessary, but since this is a really big topic, I want to try to
put together something that folks find interesting, rather than
attempting to tell you what is interesting.

I sort of assume people want to see Prawn in action, so I'll be sure
to have some demonstration code.

The next most interesting thing is probably some of the techniques we
used while building Prawn.  We really had a lot of success with
getting user contributions, and I think this is in no small part due
to some of the things that we set out from the offset, including
documentation standards, testing expectations, guidelines for
contribution, the push for copious example code, etc.

If we opted for something more hard core, I could spend a little time
talking about what it's like to translate such a low level format as
PDF into Ruby.  Obviously, this isn't going to have much 'takeaway'
value, but it might lead to some fun mind bending code samples.  But
it seems like these days, there is less of a thirst for such talks.

Finally, I could give my impressions on the whole "Ruby Mendicant"[2]
idea.  I feel like I almost rather do a BoF or some informal gathering
than talk to a large group about how to do something crazy and
unreasonable with your life, but I don't really know to what extent
this appeals to a general crowd, I may be underestimating.

These are just my thoughts.  Of course, no matter what goes on in my
talk, you'll see some elements of each of them.  What I want to know
is what people are interested in, even if it's not on this list.  If
there are some questions people want answered, or topics people want
me to cover, I'd be happy to.  I think it'd be great fun to give a
community-driven talk, so please share your ideas!

Folks who aren't attending the conference are welcome to submit ideas,
but please indicate whether or not you'll be there, so I know how to
weight things.

-greg

[0] http://rubymanor.org/
[1] http://rubyconf.org/talks/95
[2] http://rubymendicant.wikidot.com/
James G. (Guest)
on 2008-10-31 20:53
(Received via mailing list)
On Oct 31, 2008, at 10:42 AM, Gregory B. wrote:

> In the spirit of Ruby Manor[0], I'm asking for feedback on what people
> would like to see in my RubyConf talk[1],
> which will be on Saturday November 8th, just after lunch (1:15).

I can't make it, sadly, but I've seen you discuss Prawn before and I
can sure tell you what I liked.

> I sort of assume people want to see Prawn in action, so I'll be sure
> to have some demonstration code.

Yeah, I thought that was the awesome part of the OK.rb talk.  It's
just awesome to see 20 lines of Ruby code generating usable PDFs,
quickly.  We've never had that before.  Period.

> The next most interesting thing is probably some of the techniques we
> used while building Prawn.

This is nice, but not as important to me.  I think we've all seen
quite a few successful projects now covering most of the options.

To me, Prawn sells itself.  I'm far more interested in what it really
is, now, and how I can use that than how it grew up.

Maybe others would prefer to see this though.

> If we opted for something more hard core, I could spend a little time
> talking about what it's like to translate such a low level format as
> PDF into Ruby.

I find this very interesting, but I'm a geek that way.

Translating binary formats like this is generally just more tedious
than hard.  However, I think a lot of people just don't know where to
start when doing something like this because no one has ever shown
them.  That's why I think this is valuable.

> Finally, I could give my impressions on the whole "Ruby Mendicant"[2]
> idea.

This is more interesting to me than traditional testing,
documentation, and contribution standards because it was a unique
approach that has been pretty successful.  Others might see new ways
to used techniques like this.

Good luck with the talk!

James Edward G. II
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