Ruby Weekly News 20th February - 5th March 2006


Ruby Weekly News 20th February - 5th March 2006

Ruby Weekly News is a summary of the week’s activity on the ruby-talk
mailing list / the comp.lang.ruby newsgroup / Ruby forum, brought to
by Tim S…

[ Contribute to the next newsletter ]

Articles and Announcements

 * RubyConf 2006, October 20-22, Denver!

   David A. Black: "The directors of Ruby Central, Inc. are pleased 

announce that the sixth International Ruby Conference (RubyConf
will be held in the Denver, Colorado area, October 20-22, 2006."

 * Registration now open for Silicon Valley Ruby Conference

   David A. Black also announced that registration is open for the
   Silicon Valley Ruby Conference, to be held April 22-23rd 2006. 

unrelated to RubyConf.)

   "This event is a co-production of SDForum and Ruby Central, Inc."

 * Writers needed for The Ruby Bookshelf project

   Julian I. Kamil asked for help for converting open-licensed Ruby
   documents (tutorials etc.) into his Pandora format ("a simple web
   document and application platform written in Ruby").

   > ... - a good understanding of usability principles to be able 

> convert existing (sometimes hard to read) contents into Pandora
> books that are more structured, more readable, and more usable;
> …

 * Rails on the Mac - Apple Article

   Jim F. linked to an article at that 

Ruby on Rails on MacOS X.

 * Ruby metablog for Korean rubyists

   Minkoo S. proudly announced, "a meta blog for 

rubyists, whose primary goal is to provide useful documents and
information to Korean Ruby programmers."

 * Canada on Rails announces location, and a site redesign

   Nathaniel S. H. Brown announced that Canada on Rails have decided 

on a
location for the upcoming conference YVR06 (mid-April 2006), and
redesigned their website, eh.

   > BCIT Downtown Campus has been chosen, with a maximum capacity 

of 300
> people. With already over 50% of the seats filled, be sure to
> register soon or you might miss out on one of the most exciting
> technical events to come to Vancouver.
> YVR06 will be twice the size of the last conference by Open
> Events held last June, and with 4 times the amount of speakers,
> during the two days. All for only $250 with the early bird

User Group News

 * Toronto Ruby U. Group, 5 Mar 2006 Meeting

   Mike S. said that the Toronto Ruby U. Group were having their
   March 2006 meeting on Sunday 5th at the Linux Caffe.

 * Calgary Ruby U. Society (CRUSERS)

   Alexey V. announced that the CRUSERS (Calgary Ruby U.
   Society) had their first meeting on Feburary 23rd, featuring a 

presentation by Paul R. and donuts thanks to ThoughtWorks

   "So, if you like Ruby and live in Calgary, you are most welcome 

join us."

 * First Pune Ruby Group Meet

   Dibya P. announced the first Ruby / RoR meeting for the Pune 

Group: February 25th 2006. (Pune is a city in India.)

   As well as introductions to Ruby and Rails, agile development and
   reverse engineering will be discussed.

 * March Ruby events in the SF Bay Area

   Rich M. sent out the list of Ruby events in the San Francisco 

Area in March 2006.

   "Sadly, no South Bay Ruby events have been announced. C'mon, 

make something happen…"

   There are events on the 14th and 22nd.

 * Next meeting of codefesters in Columbia Maryland

   The codefesters of Columbia, Maryland are meeting every Monday.
   Initially they met to learn Rails together, but have now expanded 

non-Rails R…

   "At this time we've got some people working on the rails project 

other folks learning how to do Test Driven Development with

Quote of the Week

 * Re: [QUIZ] Current Temperature (#68)

   Dave B.'s entry in the "Current Temperature" Ruby Q.. You'll 

have to read it.


is there a seperate mailing list for novices?

John M.: “After having writen many lines of bloat… Is there a
seperate list for noobs for embarassingly simple questions and such?”

Patrick H.:

To second what has already been said, don’t run away, join the fun.
is a nice place, because matz is nice. Start asking questions and
you will be answering them as well.

No Ruby Weekly News 20th - 26th February 2006

Tim S. announced a week without Ruby Weekly News.
(Hey, that was last week.)

Did you know that anyone can contribute to the next newsletter,
simply by
going to, clicking the “contribute” button,
then summarising a few threads?

It’s especially helpful now that there are SO MANY threads every week


A question was asked about “Capistrano”, which provides this
with an excuse to note that this is the new name of SwitchTower.

The renaming is due to an unpleasant company sending a Cease & Desist
letter to Jamis B., saying they have a trademark on “SwitchTower”
(apparently they have a product relating to web conferencing that
what they call a “SwitchTower Network”).

AJAX Patterns Blog

Pat Eyler:

Christian Gross, the author of AJAX and Best Practices, runs a blog
at and has started a poll asking which
language he
should port his AJAX patterns to next. (They are currently
available for
Java and .Net).

If anyone’s interested in seeing Ruby up next, you might head over
the blog and cast your vote.

Three days later there was a new post on Christian’s blog, wondering
was going on. The poll went from 10 votes total, with PHP leading, to
than 150 votes, 91% of which were for Ruby.

I thought, this can’t be, what we have here is a situation where
person voted over a hundred times. Thinking that this was the case
inspected the log files. At that point I was awe-struck because the
addresses that voted were scattered throughout the Internet.

What happened? I think one of two things; One person who hacked
using an
army of “bots”. Or somebody told somebody else in a Ruby forum and
“Hey folks VOTE!”. Until I know better I am thinking the latter.
now it seems that Ruby people seem to be adding their votes. What
this mean? Ruby! Not that I am complaining, but interesting that
Ruby community is very active!

dirty ranges

You dirty, dirty ranges.

Dirk van Deun came across some interesting behaviour when he modified

range = “a”…“z”

range.min[0] = “b”

range.max[0] = “y”


Editor note: All irb session outputs in this summary have been


and tweaked.

If you’re confused by the [0], then observe that

s = “hello”; s[0] = “j”; puts(s)

results in “jello”.

The examples could be rewritten to use foo.replace(“xxx”) instead of

foo[0] = “xxx”.

George O. said that the correct way to modify endpoints (if you
is with Range#begin and Range#end.

#begin and #end are direct accessors to the endpoint objects,
#max is calculated, taking into account end-closedness. It should
not be
surprising, then, that #max and #end return different objects.

Regarding the common feeling of Don’t Do That (George: “Ranges
are immutable, so changing their value indirectly like that is kinda
against the grain”), Dirk van Deun said that it’s more subtle than

range = “a”…“z”

ary = range.to_a
[“a”, “b”, “c”, “d”, “e”, “f”, “g”, “h”, “i”, “j”, “k”, “l”, “m”,
“n”, “o”, “p”, “q”, “r”, “s”, “t”, “u”, “v”, “w”, “x”, “y”, “z”]

ary[0][0] = “z”


There were a couple more posts pondering having range clone the

Current Temperature (#68)

Caleb T. came up with the week’s Ruby Q…

Write a Ruby program such that given a certain argument to the
program it
will return the current temperature of that location. People living
the United States may be interested in temperature by ZIP code:

     $ ruby current_temp.rb 47201
     The temperature in Columbus, Indiana is 32 degrees F.

Other locales may want to use their own mailing codes, or city

     $ ruby current_temp.rb madrid
     The temperature in Madrid, Spain is 12 degrees C.

New Releases

Second drop of RubyCLR bridge

John L. released the second version of his RubyCLR bridge, which
for Ruby integration with .NET 2.0 (other bridges out there only use
1.1 features).

“To show off its features, I’ve built a non-trivial all-Ruby Windows
2.0 RSS Reader application that’s in the distribution.”