[ANN] Instant Rails Screencast

I created a screencast showing how you can use Instant Rails to get a
fully functional Rails environment running on Windows in under 5
minutes.

Get started with Ruby on Rails in less than 5 minutes
http://mattgriffith.net/PermaLink.aspx?guid=97aa05b7-2e38-4c7d-b184-45ab2e2715b9

Right now the video is only available in Windows Media. Eventually there
will be a flash version available too.

Matt G.

On 7/11/06, Matt G. [email protected] wrote:

will be a flash version available too.

Matt G.
http://mattgriffith.net

Matt, this is really cool… thanks for doing this!

I’m going to like to this from the Instant Rails home page.

Curt

Curt,

Matt, this is really cool… thanks for doing this!

No problem. Thank you for all your hard work making Instant Rails
happen. Had I known about Instant Rails I would have tried RoR much
sooner. As it happened I didn’t discover Instant Rails until after I
figured out how to install Ruby, Rails, and SQLite3 on my own. When I
did discover Instant Rails I was blown away. It is amazing.

I’m going to like to this from the Instant Rails home page.

Excellent.

Thanks,
Matt

Matt G. schrieb:

Right now the video is only available in Windows Media. Eventually there
will be a flash version available too.

Great video, how did you create it?

g,

Daniel Völkerts wrote:

Great video, how did you create it?

Thanks.

I used Windows Media Encoder (free) to record an 800x600 region of my
screen. I recorded the audio with a Logitech USB microphone that I got
from Amazon for about $20. I uploaded to Blip.tv for free. Blip.tv will
host it for free and eventually they will convert it to flash and host
both versions. That way there will be a low quality but accessible flash
version available too.

The only difficult thing about it was that it took about 20 takes to get
it the way I wanted. And each take took about 5-10 minutes to set up
because I had to reset the Windows Firewall and Instant Rails. I spent
most of a weekend working on it off and on.

In the end I’m glad I took the time to get it right. The first take ran
for about 15 minutes or more with me babbling about all sorts of stuff.
By the last take I was sort of on autopilot and I think it flows a lot
better because of it. I wanted something that was quick and easy to
watch so someone could get the gist without investing a lot of time. The
last 4 or 5 takes were just me attempting to get under the 5 minute
mark.

You should definitely consider creating some screencasts too. It costs
nothing to create them or host them if you run Windows. On other
platforms it is also free or very cheap to record them.

I plan to do many more. I have another posted to my blog now and I have
another ready to post. The next one I’m getting ready to record is about
basic Ruby/Rails debugging. I spun my wheels a lot at first because it
wasn’t obvious to me how to debug. Once I took the time to figure it out
it was simple.

I look for subjects where I wish I had an experienced RoR developer
sitting next to me when I tried to figure them out. Then I just imagine
that I’m playing that role for someone else. The biggest challenge is to
keep it simple. I tend to want to go off on tangents and talk about all
sorts of crap. But then when I watch the end result I realize that I
don’t want to hear all that crap. I just want the video to get to the
point. The process helps me get to the point quicker. I wish I could do
that in my writing, but for some reason I don’t spot the cruft in my
writing nearly as well as I do in my screencasts :wink:

Matt G.

Daniel Völkerts wrote:

Matt G. schrieb:

Right now the video is only available in Windows Media. Eventually there
will be a flash version available too.

Great video, how did you create it?

g,

Matt,

Excellent video. I use InstantRails and the setup is so very simple -
very nice.

Two things for me that I went through while installing it that may be of
benefit to people watching your video:

  1. I prefer RadRails as an IDE. It wasn’t intuitive to me at first how
    to get RadRails to work with the InstantRails setup. It was very easy:
    From RadRails, Menu “Window | Preferences” then expand Ruby, go to
    Installed Interpreters and browse to the ruby.exe under the instant
    rails install directory (\ruby\bin\ruby.exe)

  2. How to get mysql to start as a service. I think the InstantRails
    doesn’t ship with the necessary binary to do this - but haven’t
    investigated it further. Probably not necessary for most people using
    InstantRails. It isn’t important enough for me to have spent the extra
    time figuring it out!

Good work!

Michael

Michael wrote:

  1. I prefer RadRails as an IDE. It wasn’t intuitive to me at first how
    to get RadRails to work with the InstantRails setup.

I have a screencast about running tests in RadRails and I show how to
set the Installed Interpreters to get that working. But the Instant
Rails case is a little unique since if you are only using Instant Rails
you have to run the Instant Rails ‘use_ruby.cmd’ to set the path before
you run RadRails. Otherwise as far as I know none of the RadRails
integrated Rake menus or the Generator panel will work. This is another
setup that I thought about covering in a future screencast.

  1. How to get mysql to start as a service.

Yeah I’m not even sure how you’d do that. Like you, I just run MySQL
from Instant Rails. In fact that is the only feature of Instant Rails I
use. I installed the one-click Ruby installer and that is how I run Ruby
& Rails. I also installed the UnixUtils for Windows. This helps me when
plugins and Capistrano tasks naively shell out to ‘rm -rf’ instead of
using the Ruby equivalents from fileutils.rb. It also helps to have them
available so I don’t have to remember to use “dir” and friends when I’m
on Windows.

Thanks,
Matt G.

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