Forum: Ruby Newbie question on Ruby module support.

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Harry (Guest)
on 2007-02-04 17:40
(Received via mailing list)
Hello,

I'm very new to Ruby. Like its elegant syntax very much, so much so
that I instantly feel like dumping Perl.  However, I'm also hearing
that the number of modules (or, packages) that come with Ruby are far,
far less compared to Perl.

Since I'm not sure whether (or, how much of) this is true, I'm
wondering whether switching to Ruby from Perl for my scripting, sys
admin, and general programming tasks would be a wise decision.  Could
someone from the community please advise? Thanks!

Regards,
Harry
M. Edward (Ed) Borasky (Guest)
on 2007-02-04 19:19
(Received via mailing list)
Harry wrote:
> someone from the community please advise? Thanks!
>
> Regards,
> Harry
>
It depends on how much of CPAN you need. Yes, there's a lot more in CPAN
than there is in the Ruby libraries. But everything for "general" system
administration and scripting is in Ruby or its libraries.

One thing to watch out for, though, is the 'economics' of a language
switch. If you've got a huge Perl code base that needs to be maintained,
someone is going to have to do that if you start writing all the new
code in Ruby.

--
M. Edward (Ed) Borasky, FBG, AB, PTA, PGS, MS, MNLP, NST, ACMC(P)
http://borasky-research.blogspot.com/

If God had meant for carrots to be eaten cooked, He would have given
rabbits fire.
gga (Guest)
on 2007-02-05 04:05
(Received via mailing list)
On 4 feb, 12:35, "Harry" <removed_email_address@domain.invalid> wrote:
> Hello,
>
> I'm very new to Ruby. Like its elegant syntax very much, so much so
> that I instantly feel like dumping Perl.  However, I'm also hearing
> that the number of modules (or, packages) that come with Ruby are far,
> far less compared to Perl.

It is probably not true, unless you are a true Perl expert that knows
each module inside out and uses a lot of obscure features.  For most
tasks, you should be able to find equivalent or better modules than
you find in Perl (this, speaking as Perl guy with 5 years experience).
My guess is that the best way for you to find out about modules is to
make a list of what you need and ask about what the equivalent ruby
library is.  If you find something big missing, Ruby may not be for
you (yet).

>
> Since I'm not sure whether (or, how much of) this is true,
>

My guess is that it is FUD.  You can also try checking www.rubyforge.org
and the older http://raa.ruby-lang.org/ for what you might need.
Between both, they cover pretty much all libraries available to Ruby.
Some libs come with a low version number (but sometimes that's not an
indication of how reliable or finished they are).   Most libs are
pretty mature, and, in the case of rubyforge, are available with a
very similar (and better) system to CPAN.

>I'm wondering whether switching to Ruby from Perl for my scripting, sys
> admin, and general programming tasks would be a wise decision.  Could
> someone from the community please advise? Thanks!

Probably yes, unless you are maintaining a huge Perl code-base that
you would be forced to port.  And even then, you may still consider it
if you think Ruby's elegance will save you time and money over the
years.
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