Noobie user comments and questions

After at least a year waiting for a round tuit, it finally arrived, and
I started to learn Ruby. I am talking a matter of days here.

This language is awesome, and the only form of OO that I can be
comfortable with. Java and C make me want to bang my head againt the
wall with all the useless repitition that gets in the way of process
flow.

But there are a few questions/concerns/issues I would like to address.

I am not a programmer, though I can usually get anything I want done in
perl, with enough time and google.

I love Perl, but many of my main modules are getting old and are not
updated - particularly those dealing with APIs.

I am currently concentrating on getting my Win32 XP system fully
proficient with Ruby. I need to use 1.93 because of the march=nocona
issue, and have no clue as to the exact steps to recompile without it.
Because I am not a programmer, does not mean I am not fully supplied
with compilers!

I have Win7 64 (will not upgrade it further), and Linux Debian Jessie
and Betsy(Mint). Also have on this machine Ruby 2.2.4 on cygwin. Here I
also have Jruby, which I do not like, as its slower than merde. I am not
really fond of Java at all.

I am a bit confused about the versions issue. How do i know what
versions to use? And why does the mirror script insist I have every
module since cration with its dozens of versions? We are taling well
over half a million…

I intend to do alot of work offline, so I want full access to a local
source of modules. Is there a source of info to advise me on what to
install just for sysadmin use and parsing texts, and interacting with
databases. At some future time I may take in interest in Rails, and have
a remote server set up that provides it. I want to install in bulk.

Devkit, BTW seems to be broken in XP (and possibly 7 from complaints in
google). I have to manually insert .bat files in Ruby\bin for make,gcc
and link pointing to C:\Devkit. I have no problem now compiling C using
the TDM version.

Where is everybody? There seems to be alot more user and forum activity
for Perl and Java… I hate IRC and dont do mailing lists and have no
interest in ‘local’ user groups.

Is there anything better than Rubymine for an IDE/package manager? It
messes with a key app, and is certainly not worth paying money for. Too
clunky.

Well, hello folk! I am now off to read and take notes from past posts,
and nothing helps like learning from experiences from other users.
Textbooks are often not real lie…

A few points:

JRuby is, in general, faster than Ruby, not slower, though the actual
speed depends on the JVM version. What is slower, is the startup
process. Hence, if you have just a tiny script, it will appear slower.
I’m using JRuby for (long-running) applications and MRI Ruby for
programs which run well under one minute anyway.

As long as you stick within JRuby, you don’t see much of Java
(fortunately). However, if you run JRuby on your Windows machine AND are
using Cygwin, the interaction between the two is not very smooth (mostly
because the interaction between Windows Java and Cygwin is not smooth),
and as long as you see yourself as a beginner, just stick with Cygwin
Ruby.

As for the community, it is said that there are so few people hanging
around in Ruby Forum. While there are several places on the Net, where
Ruby is discussed, my impression is that the liveliest community is at
StackOverflow. As for JRuby, the community in general seems to be
smaller. For problems regarding specifically the “J” part of JRuby, the
JRuby mailing list is a good choice, but still there, it happens that
you don’t receive any answer to your question.

As for the IDE, most people praise RubyMine, so this is perhaps the best
one. As for me, I’m using just a (free) text editor with syntax
highlighting and a little bit support for Ruby (for example Komodo or
jEdit), and I manage my gems (I think this is what you mean by packages)
from the command line, using the builtin ‘gem’ command.

Note that with Cygwin Ruby, you can only use those gems which are
written in plain Ruby, not those which have a (compiled) part written in
C. If this is an issue, you could install the Windows version of Ruby
instead.

@speed: I’m not doing measurements, but I guess setting up the JVM for
Ruby takes some time.

@versions: If you need to manage different Ruby versions on the same
machine, have a look at rvm

@cygwin: I don’t think the problem is from compiling extensions.
Problems can occur from two sources: (1) Many users who install Cygwin,
don’t install the environment for compiling C code into a suitable
format (because they usually don’t need to). (2) Most users who write
Gems for Ruby, don’t bother to test it on Cygwin. Since Cygwin is not
Linux, the code might break, simply because it is untested. Aside of
this, you can compile Gems. It’s just that you are on your own, if it
doesn’t work.

Perhaps loading down JRuby with a few hundred megabytes of modules has
slowed up its start speed?? But the height of inefficiency is
reinventing the wheel and Java has many
methods/subroutines/classes/gems/modules built into it.

Jruby looks ideal for running a remote database manager that can also be
run locally via jdbc. Useful for ecommerce where inventory is measured
in tens of thousands (pointless for small ‘boutique’ shops though).

A question about MRI. On my main Debian box I have Perl loaded. For me
that means loading at least around 15,000 modules. (A similar amount on
an Activestate Perl install on another XP machine) No impact on
performance. Would the same be true of Ruby, assuming I can manage
version conflicts (not really a problem with Perl where I have symlinked
older site libraries into newer versions, but just kept the path parsing
in proper order!).

On this XP machine I am now using MRI 1.93 with the tdm devkit.
Keeping it first on the path seems to help…

As Devkit is nothing more an a hacked MinGW, I am a bit suprised to hear
that Cygwin cant compile C-extensions as it has both a fully loaded gcc,
as well as access to MinGW (for compiling non-cygwin1.dll dependent
apps).
On XP seems to compile without problems, though its default installion
procedures are broken (at least here).

I have recently installed Visual Studio 2005 here as it comes with an
msvcrt32.dll that helps fend off M$'s attempts to destroy XP.

Currently I have issues with systemd in linux and havent bothered much
with the platform lately, and waiting for a debian platform to emerge
fully without it. LMDE Betsy is a good candidate but the next version is
supposed to be fully implementing it, and some more Canonical garbage.

I am not sure how much I intend to bother with Rails, and frankly know
next to nothing about it. If I want a plain website, Wordpress is fine,
a community website finds Drupal a good choice, though I would like to
find an ecommerce site other than OSCommerce that can manage remote
administration of large MYSQL databases. Ideally something with a
large Access/Filemaker database, as well as H2 Java.

Personally, for a code editor I find the internal editor to Far FIle
Manager to work just fine (especially with braces), though you may need
to install an add-on. Its lua based Win32, though I’ve run it in Wine
(avoiding junctions).

I am interested in eventually contributing to the Russian financed
ReactOS project which is extending the viability of traditional NT
architecture, as opposed to the atrocious Vista model. I have a Win7
machine. I just dont like it.

StackOverflow is an awesome site, except for the fact that it has some
topic-nazi moderators, which means its not a place I can ever feel at
home with.

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