First let me say that I mean no disrespect with these comments. It’s a
bona fide effort to better understand the significance of something that
the core Rails team is clearly very interested in and proud of.

So with that disclaimer out of the way, I say to you, what’s the big
deal about REST? I’ve seen the keynote from DHH, and was left more with
a pleasant feeling of “well, that’s nice”, rather than having been
infected by his obvious excitement with these ideas.

Ok, sure, the (slightly forced) correlation between CRUD and the four
methods of http is, shall we say, elegant, or at least cute.

Ok, maybe it cleans up Routes.rb just a tiny bit.

On those (for me so far, very rare) occasions where a decent looking
screen implementation of an app is simple enough to provide a pristine
set of “nothing but authorization” CRU and D methods, maybe you save
about 12 lines of code needed to provide a separate set of such
controller methods for a web service implementation…

…and leading off of that, so cool, they’ve provided us with a new
light weight alternative for web services. That’s nice. I’ll probably
use that, but it was pretty far down on my wish list…

So, acts_as_devils_advocate asks, was I busy yawning during the
important part? :slight_smile:


Well, I somewhat agree… and I’m actually using the REST stuff for a
valid business need in my current app.

But I will throw in here that:

  • I still find map.resources hella confusing… map.connect was
    wonderfully obvious, simple, and powerful (though obviously one can
    still use it… I do)

  • Not every interaction one will do with a server can be expressed as a
    noun. Ok, it probably can, but it will sometimes wind up being horribly
    forced… in a year you’ll look back and say “wtf was I thinking!?!”

  • The “resource” that the inventors of http envsioned was a
    document… not a “user” or a “post” or any of that. The document is
    the result of sending a request – identified by a uri – to a server,
    and the document, the same “resource” could be in a number of different
    formats… xml being one of them.

  • Most importantly, it seems like there are a lot of people doing
    backflips to figure out “all this REST stuff” and fit it into their web
    app… even when they have no immediate use for REST… or probably
    ever will. I firmly believe that REST capabilities should only be added
    when there is a need, not to be “cool and cutting edge”.


PS: So when will acts_as_devils_advocate be available as a plugin? :slight_smile: