Forum: IronRuby How do you convince .Net developers to use IronRuby?

F0f461459193aa098a80bd3e74e0ac9c?d=identicon&s=25 Shay Friedman (shayfriedman)
on 2009-11-02 16:17
(Received via mailing list)
Hi there,

In the last month I had 3 sessions about IronRuby, all of them in front
of
.Net audience. I really believe in the IronRuby but I find it very very
hard
to pass that to existing .Net developers.
I try to show the benefits of using IR - getting things done faster
(like
POCs, internal tools), using REPL, using IR abilities from C#, IR and
Silverlight (like Gestalt), unit testing, RoR...
Most of the .Net devs are very conservative and are not willing to get
out
of their familiar development environment even when they see the clear
benefits of the new technology.
They feel that using IronRuby will take everything they love from them -
Visual Studio, Ctrl+F5, the sacred intellisense, etc.

That's about what happens during a session:
- No Visual Studio integration: 50% of the audience are willing to
leave.
- No compilation: more 25% have just lost interest.
- Intensive command line work: more 15% are shutting down.

That leaves about 10 perecent of the audience that just think of using
IronRuby, most of them decide not to eventually.

My question is - how do you suggest to present IronRuby to .Net
developers?
and to the team members - does Microsoft expect that existing .Net devs
will
start using IronRuby?

Thanks!
Shay.
2b4708f71eed5837454b608f413dab29?d=identicon&s=25 Nathan Stults (nathan)
on 2009-11-02 16:47
(Received via mailing list)
I think Time will be the most important ingredient in getting people
amped on IR. It's probably too early to expect incredible enthusiasm
from users groups. IronRuby, lacking VS integration and with all the
command line stuff, doesn't demo in the usual Microsoft fashion, so it
might be hard to wow the rank and file. If you do want to get people
excited in a demo, I'd demo in the context of C# 4.0, so you can demo
inside visual studio, and let people see IronRuby shine from within a
familiar environment. Also, ASP.NET MVC with IronRuby might resonate
better than RoR at first, and you could also try demo'ing with something
like RubyMine, that does have intellisense and refactorings.



To get IronRuby to spread, I would focus on selling IronRuby proper to
the vanguard (Alt).NET communities, their bloggers, thought leaders,
etc. who have large followings among progressive developers. They should
immediately be able to get over the lack of "tooling sugar" to see the
value IronRuby has to offer. I'd start with the testing aspects,
Cucumber, RSpec, etc. as well as Rake and its superior abilities in
creating dev tools and build automations and things, then move on to
scripting & automating existing .NET apps. I think RoR and other pure
Ruby concepts are a bit out of range for most .NET folks just now, and
anyway if they did want to start building those kinds of pure Ruby
applications in IronRuby, they'd run into some brick walls and may drop
out prematurely. From what I can tell IronRuby isn't quite ready for
real, full scale Ruby development - a hefty portion of the things I try
don't work on IronRuby yet, simply because the language isn't complete
(String#unpack, File#flock, etc) and because the community hasn't caught
up (DataMapper integrations, C# ports of native libraries, etc).



Finally, you may want to ask the JRuby community how they did it. Of
coure, Java devs by and large may be much more comfortable with command
line work, but the situation is largely the same I would think.



All in all, though, I think it is still very early to expect too much.
Hopefully, as the early adopter types start to pick this thing up and
get excited about it, they will spread the excitement - I think it is
more likely to get into people's heads that way, rather than user group
presentations. At the same time, MS will continue to improve their
tooling, JetBrains may build their RubyMine product as a VS integration
when IronRuby is more mature, and demos can get flashier. That will help
some too. That's my guess anyway.











From: ironruby-core-bounces@rubyforge.org
[mailto:ironruby-core-bounces@rubyforge.org] On Behalf Of Shay Friedman
Sent: Monday, November 02, 2009 7:07 AM
To: ironruby-core
Subject: [Ironruby-core] How do you convince .Net developers to use
IronRuby?



Hi there,

In the last month I had 3 sessions about IronRuby, all of them in front
of .Net audience. I really believe in the IronRuby but I find it very
very hard to pass that to existing .Net developers.
I try to show the benefits of using IR - getting things done faster
(like POCs, internal tools), using REPL, using IR abilities from C#, IR
and Silverlight (like Gestalt), unit testing, RoR...
Most of the .Net devs are very conservative and are not willing to get
out of their familiar development environment even when they see the
clear benefits of the new technology.
They feel that using IronRuby will take everything they love from them -
Visual Studio, Ctrl+F5, the sacred intellisense, etc.

That's about what happens during a session:
- No Visual Studio integration: 50% of the audience are willing to
leave.
- No compilation: more 25% have just lost interest.
- Intensive command line work: more 15% are shutting down.

That leaves about 10 perecent of the audience that just think of using
IronRuby, most of them decide not to eventually.

My question is - how do you suggest to present IronRuby to .Net
developers?
and to the team members - does Microsoft expect that existing .Net devs
will start using IronRuby?

Thanks!
Shay.
1e39a948a58f4569c53d971c2e120920?d=identicon&s=25 Ivan Porto carrero (casualjim)
on 2009-11-02 17:17
(Received via mailing list)
AFAICT you don't, they'll have to convince themselves. I may have given
this
issue some thought before today :)

One of the problems I have with most of the .NET shops these days is
that
they are very conservative. I'm having countless discussions on the
benefits
of unit testing, stored procs vs OR/M, ...

then the developers have been misled into believing intellisense
actually
helps them while all they are missing is a tool that lets them find api
docs
fast (msdn isn't it although the new version is a lot faster), because
intellisense gets more in the way than out of it.  The same way they
have
been misled into believing static typing is the shiznit.
It took me 6 months of daily scavenging the net for an IDE and
eventually I
just bought a mac so I could use textmate and be done with it.

Before we can get ironruby to not be perceived as a "hippy" language
there
are a few things that need to happen:

1. .net 4.0 needs to be out (preferrably with a service release or 2) so
they can use it from their C# visual studio project.
2. we need a textmate/rubymate like autocomplete in visual studio that
will
just tokenize the words in a document or open documents and puts some
heuristics around which one you are most likely to use.
3. IronRuby needs to be labelled 1.0 (preferably with a SP1 stamp)
4. visual studio must not insert a BOM in the files it creates (this is
solved by creating ruby file templates see ironrubymvc project).
5. We need an example application that when compared to the C# one has
obvious benefits. It would be good to have some kind of build off,
unfortunately the human factor makes that non deterministic and
subjective.
6. IronRuby startup time needs to get a _lot_ faster, because antonio
cangiani's benchmark might show different results but for me running a
spec
suite with ironruby and one with ruby 1.9 is a difference of 2 minutes
vs 10
seconds, mostly because of startup time. but that totally kills the
rapid
feedback cycle you want.
7. blog, speak, write, convert them one at a time I say :)


I see ironruby creeping in the enterprise via 4 ways:
1. using as a test framework for their apps (and even then perhaps only
the
fan boys at first)
2. a much better nant because nobody likes writing xml
3. for rules engines where the user can define the rules, or as plugins
for
existing applications
4. Quicker prototyping

This is one of those things that isn't going to happen overnight, and
the
early hype around IronRuby didn't really help the situation.  So that
means
we still have a lot of work todo. Writing, blogging, speaking about
IronRuby
is a necessity but also making sure the experience is optimal makes a
big
difference.

If you want to be an agent for change you'll have to realize that that
is a
very frustrating position to be in because all you will face is
resistance
-being in the front line and all-, but if you take a step back then
you'll
see that usage of ironruby has grown quite a bit in recent months and as
the
implementation progresses it will increase more and faster ( a little
bit
like a snow ball).
Also change doesn't happen on the spot. For example I will get
frustrated
and stop my contract but when I talk to that company one year later it
turns
out they are actually implementing what I had been fighting for the year
before. I lack patience and tact to be really good at changing mindsets
:).
There is some ruby envy in the clr community though. I say ruby envy
because
they refuse to move out of C# but wish C# has all the things ruby has
but
with the wonderful C# syntax.

To give an example of the mindset:

The microsoft belgium people almost laughed at me when I told them I was
going to write a real app in IronRuby when I applied for bizspark.

I don't see command line as a problem because as the guys from sapphire
steel have shown they can integrate that quite good , rubymine and
netbeans
show that too. I'm just faster with the command line and I feel like I'm
in
control (which in reality I'm not of course)

I also agree with Nathan IronRuby isn't ready for prime-time
mass-adoption
yet.
---
Met vriendelijke groeten - Best regards - Salutations
Ivan Porto Carrero
Blog: http://flanders.co.nz
Twitter: http://twitter.com/casualjim
Author of IronRuby in Action (http://manning.com/carrero)
15c3bc7ccf4caabc322ac2813523dd29?d=identicon&s=25 Dotan N. (Guest)
on 2009-11-02 17:28
(Received via mailing list)
1. Quick construction/prototyping,
2. Slow maintenance

no one building a real enterprise application with intricate licensing
and
SLAs will settle for (2).

when i think about ironruby in a .net environment - i think web, and
embedded scripting extensions / DSLs in a "real" .Net app. thats your
audience.


On Mon, Nov 2, 2009 at 5:46 PM, Nathan Stults
B7b34fda26b7ea99b8b4d42497193220?d=identicon&s=25 Seo Sanghyeon (Guest)
on 2009-11-02 18:31
(Received via mailing list)
2009/11/3 Shay Friedman <shay.friedman@gmail.com>:
> My question is - how do you suggest to present IronRuby to .Net developers?

I'd wait a bit more before the implementation matures. In my opinion,
IronRuby is doing pretty well, compared to IronPython in its pre-1.0
days with similar implementation maturity. You could even say IronRuby
is doing *too* well, that is, generating unwarranted hypes.
6c7bb04dc1bc2a9a85954c3fed442e5e?d=identicon&s=25 Kevin Radcliffe (Guest)
on 2009-11-02 19:50
(Received via mailing list)
I haven't been in the position to present on this, so please take my
observations with a grain of salt.
Personally, I'm a big fan of listening, and not so much on convincing.

You say the biggest group of people that leave is:

- No Visual Studio integration: 50% of the audience are willing to
leave.

If possible, try to note a few of the people leaving and attempt
to catch up w/ them later (particularly good if you know them
personally).

Don't be confrontational, but try to genuinely dig into why they find
out
why they find Visual Studio integration to be such a big barrier.

Personally, I initially perceived this to be a big barrier to adopting
Ruby/IronRuby.
It was only once I started using it and experiencing the development
flow myself
that I realized that this was mostly a non-issue.

You might be able to work with someone "on-stage" to walk them through
a very simple
development flow to help ease the fear of working without the IDE.
You might show right away that there is an MS Connect feature request
to add VS support - though this might drive some people away too ;)

In any case, I think talking to the people that are walking away and
taking their concerns seriously
(even though you may have gotten past those concerns yourself) will
put you in a MUCH
better position to sympathize with and understand those developers
that are walking away.

As a side-effect, you might be able to "convince" them to try IronRuby
too ;)

Best Regards, Kevin
3a9ff49a9e689dcbfc8242f05180cc31?d=identicon&s=25 Orion Edwards (Guest)
on 2009-11-02 20:52
(Received via mailing list)
Don't sell IronRuby, sell Ruby itself. It's not hard to find sample code
(or
just refactor some existing C# code) where the ruby version is quarter
the
size, and twice as readable than the C# version.

If you can convince people of the benefits of ruby, and then go "and now
here's the party trick, you can integrate IronRuby with all your
existing C#
code for no effort" then I've found that works.

There are also a couple of areas where ruby really shines

1) Exploration. Irb is already pretty good at this, but a REALLY killer
feature would be integrated IronRuby in visual studio's immediate window
under the debugger.

2) Testing. Unfortunately this is harder to sell as if you're testing
other
.NET code you really need the visual studio integration :-(
91eb330fb36d1e03c856574dfb77d2bc?d=identicon&s=25 Thibaut Barrère (thbar)
on 2009-11-03 12:27
(Received via mailing list)
Very quick thoughts:
- dynamic (ruby/python) is quite frightening for most .Net developers I
know
(they tend to have a mostly static background, C C++ Java .Net)
- I tend to focus my energy on building useful stuff with X vs.
advocating
the use of X (valid point for .Net in 2001, Rails in 2005, Pascal in
1993,
etc...). Even after seeing mind-changing implementations, most of the
developers won't switch unless the change is enforced, somehow!
- I agree with Kevin: listening then explaining is usually far more
efficient as compared to convincing, which generates a strong force
back.
- I agree that despite the huge work behind it and the reliability of
IR,
we're very early in its life. Most people I know will expect a 1.0
timestamp
before even trying to download the package.
- I would try hard *not* to make hype at all around IronRuby. I know
it's
hard for book writers, early adopters etc, but honestly it tend to put
too
much expectations, and it's very quick to backfire with this. Just
providing
informational stuff, kind and useful, not "we're better than x" kind of
stuff, works best in my opinion.

Well this doesn't give you a solution, but hopefully a few more points
to
think about :)

Thibaut
F0f461459193aa098a80bd3e74e0ac9c?d=identicon&s=25 Shay Friedman (shayfriedman)
on 2009-11-03 15:52
(Received via mailing list)
Thanks all for your replys. I might have been a bit harsh with the word
I
chose... When I talk with .Net devs and present IronRuby to them, I
don't
really want to "convince" them it's the best language (it can't be, it's
an
entirely subjective opinion), I just try to add IronRuby to their list
of
"to be interested in" stuff, a task which, as I wrote, I'm not
successful
with too much.

Regarding people leaving - they don't really leave. Their attention does
:)
Trying to speak with most of them might be frustrating as well since
most of
them doesn't have something against IronRuby specifically, it's about a
new
language in general. For example, one said to me "why does Microsoft
release
so much languages - D, F#, IronPython, IronRuby? all I need is C#"...

Anyway, from your answers I understand that I should not expect much of
an
interest now. We are the front runners now BUT the rest WILL follow! :)

I'm a big believer in presentations and telling people about
technologies -
new or old. In my opinion, it is more effective than written articles
(it
is, of course, not a substitute to the written word).
I try to talk wherever I can and my target is to push IronRuby to the
audience consciousness so when they need something IronRuby might really
help them in, it will jump to their mind. I plan to continue with that
(someone want to have me? :-) ) even though it is a bit frustrating
currently.

In conclusion, next time I'm doing an IronRuby presentation, I'd try to
do
as follows:
1. Show them demos in their "natural" environment - Visual Studio:
  - .Net 4.0
  - Running IronRuby from C#
  - Maybe configure VS to execute ir.exe and write the demo code inside
VS
(as a regular txt file) - to eliminate command line :)
2. Show them Ruby test frameworks and test custom .Net code. My
suggestion:
Cucumber.
3. Suggestion: show them how to install IronRuby from downloading until
running a Hello World sample.
4. DSLs - show them one heck of a DSL (a practical one).
5. Show how to use IronRuby for adding REPL abilities to a .Net
application
or as an easy way to provide extension abilities to a .Net application.

IronRuby will prevail!!!
:)

Shay.

--
--------------------------------------------------
Shay Friedman
Author of IronRuby Unleashed
http://www.IronShay.com
Follow me: http://twitter.com/ironshay

On Tue, Nov 3, 2009 at 1:27 PM, Thibaut Barrère
7956c3c7d7ef344265029e6b4b569b91?d=identicon&s=25 Huw Collingbourne (huw)
on 2009-11-03 16:23
Re. Visual Studio integration. My company (SapphireSteel Software)
released an alpha Visual Studio IDE for IronRuby about 18 months ago
(Feb 2008): http://www.sapphiresteel.com/Ruby-In-Steel-For-IronRuby

At that time, we offered to work with the IronRuby team to develop a
more powerful IDE but we received very little interest. As a result we
transferred our efforts into a developing additional tools for our
standard Ruby IDE and also creating a new Flex/ActionScript IDE for
Visual Studio.

best wishes

Huw Collingbourne

http://www.sapphiresteel.com
15c3bc7ccf4caabc322ac2813523dd29?d=identicon&s=25 Dotan N. (Guest)
on 2009-11-03 16:30
(Received via mailing list)
Shay,
Based on your target audience I would do this agenda:

1. show a very intuitive DSL, go into source and expose ruby meta
features,
mixins, "reflection"
2. show how you twist a ruby object from ir
3. Embedded ruby as an ability to add scripting to your app
4. rapid prototyping if time allows  (adding stuff to living instances
and
watching it change)

PS (if you do this publicly in .il, i'd like to attend)
99b1f0c67bec23747d007e27d000487b?d=identicon&s=25 Ryan Riley (Guest)
on 2009-11-03 23:55
(Received via mailing list)
On Tue, Nov 3, 2009 at 9:23 AM, Huw Collingbourne
<lists@ruby-forum.com>wrote:

> Re. Visual Studio integration. My company (SapphireSteel Software)
> released an alpha Visual Studio IDE for IronRuby about 18 months ago
> (Feb 2008): http://www.sapphiresteel.com/Ruby-In-Steel-For-IronRuby
>
> At that time, we offered to work with the IronRuby team to develop a
> more powerful IDE but we received very little interest. As a result we
> transferred our efforts into a developing additional tools for our
> standard Ruby IDE and also creating a new Flex/ActionScript IDE for
> Visual Studio.


Any chance that might pick back up? I remember you mentioned that you
weren't planning to keep it up with each release of IronRuby as it
developed, and I imagine that was a primary reason for the lack of
interest.
Now that IR is closing in on 1.0, I would bet you would find more
interest.

Regards,


Ryan Riley

Email: ryan.riley@panesofglass.org
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/ryanriley
Blog: http://wizardsofsmart.net/
Website: http://panesofglass.org/
35ef58663dfa1ffb01357c30bc56f65c?d=identicon&s=25 David Escobar (Guest)
on 2009-11-04 09:33
(Received via mailing list)
In my opinion, I think two things are necessary for IronRuby to gain
more
momentum:

1. Allow static compilation of assemblies (.dll's, .exe's, etc.) and
allow
applications to be distributed in the standard Windows way. Good or bad,
Windows users expect precompiled binaries that can be run and installed.
This has been one of the biggest problems with standard CRuby - spotty
support for distribution on the Windows platform. Certainly there have
been
attempts made at building .exe package makers, but they do not get
enough
maintenance and every new version of Ruby tends to break them. It's
extremely  cumbersome to have to install Ruby, wxRuby, and a myriad of
other
libraries on every user's machine (and make sure all the versions play
well
with each other!). Much easier to have one standard way of doing it.
Also,
from what I understand, RubyGems has problems on Windows.

2. Full Visual Studio integration is necessary. I realize that
intellisense
probably won't work as well with dynamic languages, but even some basic
support would be a good thing. On top of that, you have other, even more
important tools like the Windows Forms/WPF designers, debugging tools,
database and web tools, etc. After developing GUI applications with
designers, it's understandable that developers are not going to be
interested in going back to doing this through code alone (or through a
command line). Any productivity gains made by using Ruby will be offset
by
the loss in productivity from the lack of tools.

I think Ruby is one of the most elegant and productive languages
available
today, but the lack of tools is what's preventing more widespread
adoption,
especially at the corporate/production environment level. All other
things
being equal (Visual Studio integration), I think that IronRuby will win
over
C# and VB in most cases and adoption will increase significantly. So
here's
to hoping that the excellent progress already made will continue!

Just my humble opinion - thanks.
David
7956c3c7d7ef344265029e6b4b569b91?d=identicon&s=25 Huw Collingbourne (huw)
on 2009-11-04 11:48
Ryan Riley wrote:
>
> Any chance that might pick back up? I remember you mentioned that you
> weren't planning to keep it up with each release of IronRuby as it
> developed, and I imagine that was a primary reason for the lack of
> interest.

Hello Ryan.

We are going to wait to see how much interest there will be from our
customers. To date, I have to say, there hasn't been much. To be
perfectly honest, neither have we had much interest from the people here
who are already using IronRuby. Bear in mind that we released the alpha
IDE in Feb '08, so there has been plenty of time for people to let us
know whether or not Visual Studio integration of IronRuby is important
to them. To date, very little feedback has been received.

Obviously we can't commit a significant amount of our development time
to a project that is generating so little interest. As I mentioned
before, we have since moved onto the development of a Visual Studio IDE
for Adobe Flex - that project has generated a great deal of interest and
so we would need to be very convinced indeed that transferring
development time back to IronRuby would be a sensible use of our
resources.

I plan to ask our existing users for feedback on IronRuby shortly (I'll
post some questions in our forum and blog). The response we get may help
us to decide on our future plans. We'll come to a final decision some
time after the release of IR 1.0.

best wishes

Huw

http://www.sapphiresteel.com
99b1f0c67bec23747d007e27d000487b?d=identicon&s=25 Ryan Riley (Guest)
on 2009-11-04 19:36
(Received via mailing list)
On Wed, Nov 4, 2009 at 4:48 AM, Huw Collingbourne
<lists@ruby-forum.com>wrote:

> Hello Ryan.
>
> We are going to wait to see how much interest there will be from our
> customers. To date, I have to say, there hasn't been much. To be
> perfectly honest, neither have we had much interest from the people here
> who are already using IronRuby. Bear in mind that we released the alpha
> IDE in Feb '08, so there has been plenty of time for people to let us
> know whether or not Visual Studio integration of IronRuby is important
> to them. To date, very little feedback has been received.


Thanks, Huw. I can't speak for everyone else and I may be recalling this
incorrectly, but I haven't pushed for anything b/c I thought it was just
a
matter of waiting. I never got the Ruby in Steel IDE b/c I've never
earned a
dime on any of my meager Ruby work and, with IronRuby on the horizon, I
wanted to get something that would work with IR. I imagine there are
others
out there like me who just didn't want to pester. :) However, I can
certainly understand the business implications, and I appreciate you
posting
the question on your site. I'm hopeful you'll get a good response!

Best regards,

Ryan Riley

Email: ryan.riley@panesofglass.org
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/ryanriley
Blog: http://wizardsofsmart.net/
Website: http://panesofglass.org/
7956c3c7d7ef344265029e6b4b569b91?d=identicon&s=25 Huw Collingbourne (huw)
on 2009-11-04 23:07
Well we are getting some interesting comments on the post on our site so
I don't want to repeat myself too much in this thread ;-)

Suffice to say, while we have provided free IDEs for Ruby and IronRuby,
we are a commercial company so we have to take a very hard-headed view
of where our most profitable future path may be. For us to resume work
on our Visual Studio IronRuby IDE, we really need to be convinced that
there is a market for this among professional Visual Studio developers.
While it is, I suppose, possible that people have been silently waiting
for us to produce new versions of our IronRuby IDE, all I can say is
that it has been our experience that when a body of programmers is using
your IDE regularly, they don't stay silent. When we were in the beta
development of our standard Ruby IDE, we had a lot of user feedback. The
same is now true of the IDE we are building for Adobe Flex.

The future of our IronRuby IDE is not something we are going to decide
overnight. We'll certainly keep a close eye on the IronRuby forums and
we'll no doubt carry on the discussion on our own forums and blog before
we arrive at a final decision. Given the work we initially put into the
alpha IronRuby IDE (the form designer etc.) it would be personally
satisfying to take it up to the same level of development as our Ruby
and Flex IDEs. At the moment, we are not completely convinced that
diverting back resources into that would be a sound business decision.
But if we do get the sense that there genuinely is an upwelling of
interest among professional .NET / Visual Studio developers we shall, of
course, pay very close attention to that! ;-)

best wishes

Huw

http://www.sapphiresteel.com
7bb0d7e74198c735783b8a65cd14989c?d=identicon&s=25 C. K. Ponnappa (Guest)
on 2009-11-05 05:27
(Received via mailing list)
Hey Shay,

> how do you suggest to present IronRuby to .Net developers
The deal is that you're not convincing a Chevy SUV driver to switch to a
Ford SUV. You're asking him to switch to a Lamborghini sports car. The
ride quality is different, the engine  is fundamentally different, the
handling is different and though the risks to passersby are roughly the
same (they get run over if the driver is careless), the risks to the
driver are different (not much can happen to you in an SUV because, so
to speak, your ass is covered).

What I'm trying to get at with this weak (but still amusing, I hope)
analogy is that often with Ruby versus the mainstream (C#/Java), the
fact that it's IronRuby or JRuby matters little; it's the fundamentally
different approaches you need to take to ensure delivery that is the
bigger issue. This includes technical issues like the unavailability of
Intellisense (look at the bright side - the Java devs ask for
refactoring support when you try to pitch JRuby to them which is a lot
harder), software engineering issues (reliability, codebase entropy) and
political issues (the last is a huge factor in the mainstream). My
perspective - don't bother about it, at least right now. You have an
audience that has already accepted and dealt with these issues;
basically, convert the existing C-Ruby community first. Converting all
the Ferrari owners to Lamborghini is an easier proposition, and
generates enough publicity that the more adventurous among the
mainstream will start experimenting of their own accord.

As others on this thread have pointed out, most .Net shops are extremely
conservative and most developers have next to no exposure to what the
Ruby community would consider standard engineering best practices like
TDD and CI. I'd say that the primary audience that you need to convert
is the existing Ruby community by convincing them that IronRuby is a
viable production platform. I'd say once the Ruby community accepts and
promotes IronRuby just as they already have JRuby, then you can worry
about bringing the luddites on board.

At the risk of upsetting a lot of people, I think much of the mainstream
.Net world is blinkered and has a very narrow perspective. For example,
I have friends (and acquaintances) who are Microsoft devs who spend all
their time writing C#, but who have never even _heard_ of Nant, NUnit
and NHibernate. They have never heard of ReSharper and think
VisualStudio is a cutting edge (*cough*) IDE. The Alt .Net guys are
changing this, but these things take time.

Focus on converting the Ruby community and the edgier folks in the
mainstream (who tend to have their ears to the ground anyways) will
follow.

Best,
Sidu.
http://blog.sidu.in
http://twitter.com/ponnappa
2b4708f71eed5837454b608f413dab29?d=identicon&s=25 Nathan Stults (nathan)
on 2009-11-05 05:44
(Received via mailing list)
But isn't the C-Ruby or J-Ruby crowd deploying primarily on Windows a
pretty small group, all in all? Aren't most Ruby dev's working on Linux?
After all, Ruby is considerably faster on Linux. I'm having a hard time
imagining what the value proposition is for this demographic, who
shouldn't really need to convert, but simply be willing to consider
IronRuby as an alternative deployment option for Windows. Maybe I'm just
being pessimistic, but I see convincing established Ruby developers to
leave their stable, mature interpreters and libraries for 0.x IronRuby
to gain access to .NET, and at the same time wave goodbye to Ruby 1.9,
somewhat steeper of a climb than peddling dynamic languages, Ruby and
IronRuby, to the existing .NET community. I do agree that you have to go
in at the ALT.NET back door rather than the front door as the standard
enterprise .NET developer is likely to stare blankly at you while you
stammer in apparent gibberish at him, but converting Rubyists, this
early in the ball game? I say good luck to that :) My guess is the bar
of maturity and stability is even higher for existing Ruby programmers
than it is for fresh meat. But that's just my half cocked opinion. :)
99b1f0c67bec23747d007e27d000487b?d=identicon&s=25 Ryan Riley (Guest)
on 2009-11-05 06:37
(Received via mailing list)
On Wed, Nov 4, 2009 at 10:44 PM, Nathan Stults
<Nathan_Stults@hsihealth.com>wrote:

> IronRuby, to the existing .NET community.
What about RubyCocoa and Flex development? Not all Ruby is pure web or
console scripts. Apple got Ruby devs working on their platform (or maybe
vice versa). Why not Ruby WPF or Ruby Silverlight (via Ivan's IronNails
or
Jimmy's silverline)? It's not a major jump, but it gives them easier
access
to Windows client development. If nothing else, they may be able to help
evangelize the C# and VB.NET stalwarts and show them a better way. ;)

Ryan Riley

Email: ryan.riley@panesofglass.org
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/ryanriley
Blog: http://wizardsofsmart.net/
Website: http://panesofglass.org/
2b4708f71eed5837454b608f413dab29?d=identicon&s=25 Nathan Stults (nathan)
on 2009-11-05 07:09
(Received via mailing list)
Good point. I guess from an evangelism perspective, it makes sense to
talk to everyone who walks by the soapbox, as there’s something for
everyone. Even so, if the path to significant adoption = IronRuby
Evangelists =>  Rubyists  =>  .NET Foot Soldiers, I’ll eat my hat J
Fortunately, it’s made of food.



From: ironruby-core-bounces@rubyforge.org
[mailto:ironruby-core-bounces@rubyforge.org] On Behalf Of Ryan Riley
Sent: Wednesday, November 04, 2009 9:35 PM
To: ironruby-core@rubyforge.org
Subject: Re: [Ironruby-core] How do you convince .Net developers
touseIronRuby?



On Wed, Nov 4, 2009 at 10:44 PM, Nathan Stults
<Nathan_Stults@hsihealth.com> wrote:

But isn't the C-Ruby or J-Ruby crowd deploying primarily on Windows a
pretty small group, all in all? Aren't most Ruby dev's working on Linux?
After all, Ruby is considerably faster on Linux. I'm having a hard time
imagining what the value proposition is for this demographic, who
shouldn't really need to convert, but simply be willing to consider
IronRuby as an alternative deployment option for Windows. Maybe I'm just
being pessimistic, but I see convincing established Ruby developers to
leave their stable, mature interpreters and libraries for 0.x IronRuby
to gain access to .NET, and at the same time wave goodbye to Ruby 1.9,
somewhat steeper of a climb than peddling dynamic languages, Ruby and
IronRuby, to the existing .NET community.



What about RubyCocoa and Flex development? Not all Ruby is pure web or
console scripts. Apple got Ruby devs working on their platform (or maybe
vice versa). Why not Ruby WPF or Ruby Silverlight (via Ivan's IronNails
or Jimmy's silverline)? It's not a major jump, but it gives them easier
access to Windows client development. If nothing else, they may be able
to help evangelize the C# and VB.NET stalwarts and show them a better
way. ;)


Ryan Riley

Email: ryan.riley@panesofglass.org
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/ryanriley
Blog: http://wizardsofsmart.net/

Website: http://panesofglass.org/
2b4708f71eed5837454b608f413dab29?d=identicon&s=25 Nathan Stults (nathan)
on 2009-11-05 07:11
(Received via mailing list)
Good point. I guess from an evangelism perspective, it makes sense to
talk to everyone who walks by the soapbox, as there’s something for
everyone. Even so, if the path to significant adoption = IronRuby
Evangelists =>  Rubyists  =>  .NET Foot Soldiers, I’ll eat my hat.
Fortunately, it’s made of food.





From: ironruby-core-bounces@rubyforge.org
[mailto:ironruby-core-bounces@rubyforge.org] On Behalf Of Ryan Riley
Sent: Wednesday, November 04, 2009 9:35 PM
To: ironruby-core@rubyforge.org
Subject: Re: [Ironruby-core] How do you convince .Net developers
touseIronRuby?



On Wed, Nov 4, 2009 at 10:44 PM, Nathan Stults
<Nathan_Stults@hsihealth.com> wrote:

But isn't the C-Ruby or J-Ruby crowd deploying primarily on Windows a
pretty small group, all in all? Aren't most Ruby dev's working on Linux?
After all, Ruby is considerably faster on Linux. I'm having a hard time
imagining what the value proposition is for this demographic, who
shouldn't really need to convert, but simply be willing to consider
IronRuby as an alternative deployment option for Windows. Maybe I'm just
being pessimistic, but I see convincing established Ruby developers to
leave their stable, mature interpreters and libraries for 0.x IronRuby
to gain access to .NET, and at the same time wave goodbye to Ruby 1.9,
somewhat steeper of a climb than peddling dynamic languages, Ruby and
IronRuby, to the existing .NET community.



What about RubyCocoa and Flex development? Not all Ruby is pure web or
console scripts. Apple got Ruby devs working on their platform (or maybe
vice versa). Why not Ruby WPF or Ruby Silverlight (via Ivan's IronNails
or Jimmy's silverline)? It's not a major jump, but it gives them easier
access to Windows client development. If nothing else, they may be able
to help evangelize the C# and VB.NET stalwarts and show them a better
way. ;)


Ryan Riley

Email: ryan.riley@panesofglass.org
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/ryanriley
Blog: http://wizardsofsmart.net/

Website: http://panesofglass.org/
99b1f0c67bec23747d007e27d000487b?d=identicon&s=25 Ryan Riley (Guest)
on 2009-11-05 07:20
(Received via mailing list)
On Thu, Nov 5, 2009 at 12:08 AM, Nathan Stults
<Nathan_Stults@hsihealth.com>wrote:

>  Good point. I guess from an evangelism perspective, it makes sense to
> talk to everyone who walks by the soapbox, as there’s something for
> everyone. Even so, if the path to significant adoption = IronRuby
> Evangelists =>  Rubyists  =>  .NET Foot Soldiers, I’ll eat my hat JFortunately, it’s 
made of food.
>
>
> Well, since I'm taking that approach atm, here's to good health and tasty
hats! ;)


Ryan Riley

Email: ryan.riley@panesofglass.org
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/ryanriley
Blog: http://wizardsofsmart.net/
Website: http://panesofglass.org/
E1deaac6561498a0e7472e6268ea9ccc?d=identicon&s=25 Jimmy Schementi (Guest)
on 2009-11-05 07:59
(Received via mailing list)
On a related vein, I got some news from the Rails core team a couple of
days ago that the Rails documentation is viewed by Windows machines 50%
of the time. The Rails core team sees Windows developers as a huge group
of people to make happy.

>>> Ruby is considerably faster on Linux

Unfortunately, that was true with previous builds of Ruby, but the new
revived RubyInstaller project is building Ruby with more modern
compilers, getting the speed up to what Ruby on Linux is: See
http://antoniocangiano.com/2009/08/10/how-much-fas...
and
http://antoniocangiano.com/2009/08/04/a-faster-rub...
if you haven't already.

~js
15c3bc7ccf4caabc322ac2813523dd29?d=identicon&s=25 Dotan N. (Guest)
on 2009-11-05 09:11
(Received via mailing list)
dont forget that since rails devs are always looking for ways to squeeze
some more performance from their poorly performing c-ruby, if ironruby
performs considerably faster than MRI and JRuby, some dedicated windows
rails servers will start to pop up. it will be easier in every possible
way
for a .net dev to deploy, run and manage.

i think this is the major 'selling' point -- bigger share for windows
servers and bigger opportunities for .net developers at the end of the
day.

On Thu, Nov 5, 2009 at 8:58 AM, Jimmy Schementi <
7bb0d7e74198c735783b8a65cd14989c?d=identicon&s=25 C. K. Ponnappa (Guest)
on 2009-11-05 11:06
(Received via mailing list)
> But isn't the C-Ruby or J-Ruby crowd deploying primarily on Windows a
> pretty small group, all in all?
This is true. But mostly because none of them actually work for Windows
shops, because if a shop is open to C-Ruby or J-Ruby they are not a
Windows shop. Almost a Catch 22.
> After all, Ruby is considerably faster on Linux.
This is true too - but only compared to Ruby on Windows. The MRI
compared to anything else (any other language) is like treacle. In fact,
I always strongly recommend JRuby to all my clients, and one of our
flagship products (Mingle) has been on JRuby since JRuby 0.9.  Pretty
much the only thing I miss on JRuby in terms of libraries is RCov -
everything else has been ported, or better options exist in Java
already. Of course, the fact that JRuby is *way* faster than MRI helps,
and from everything I've seen IronRuby is going to be just as quick, if
not quicker.

Now, most shops are either Java or .Net and honestly, at the end of the
day, this is with reference to the supported production environment,
really, not the languages used. Taking myself as an example, I believe
Ruby is a good idea so solve certain problems, and I can (and do) make a
strong case for Ruby in Java shops thanks to JRuby. With IronRuby
becoming mainstream, I can now start to make a case for it, and this is
what I'm trying to get at. It will be dedicated Rubyists that make the
point that a Windows production environment and a Ruby project are no
longer a contradiction in terms, not unconvinced VB.Net devs or a suit
that showed up at a MS dev day by mistake. It's the early adopters that
evangelise, and someone who has only ever done C# since 2002 because his
employers asked him to clearly isn't an early adopter.

And finally, the most crucial point for me:  The .Net world doesn't
contain the most avid open source contributors (or even users) in the
world. Not by a long shot. The Java world does, and the Ruby world is
nothing but avid open source contributors and users. This is why you see
JRuby grow a viable ecosystem in no time at all, with all significant
gems ported and production deployments even before a 1.0. Without that,
you simply do not have enough tools and libraries to build stuff.
Encouraging developers and maintainers of popular Ruby gems to support
and innovate on IronRuby is of the utmost importance. And almost every
single popular gem is developed on either OSX or Linux - which means
IronRuby building and running smoothly on both Linux and OSX is
essential to get the ecosystem going.

Anyways, long story short, when we get to a point where a hacker can
confidently offer to solve a problem with a Ruby app (especially in the
enterprise, because here there be dragons) even though its a Windows
shop, we've achieved critical mass. Then its all downhill from there.

Best,
Sidu.
http://blog.sidu.in
http://twitter.com/ponnappa
B7b34fda26b7ea99b8b4d42497193220?d=identicon&s=25 Seo Sanghyeon (Guest)
on 2009-11-05 14:00
(Received via mailing list)
2009/11/5 C. K. Ponnappa <ckponnappa@gmail.com>:
> and OSX is essential to get the ecosystem going.
I agree 100%. This is why I spent a lot of time running IronPython on
Mono
in 2006 and 2007, and I believe this is of critical importance for
IronRuby too,
but this doesn't seem to be too popular here...
2b4708f71eed5837454b608f413dab29?d=identicon&s=25 Nathan Stults (nathan)
on 2009-11-05 16:38
(Received via mailing list)
You're probably right, you have a much broader perspective than I do
(Windows/MS only) and on the larger scale, I can see how acceptance of
IronRuby as a first class Ruby platform by the Ruby community will make
or break its ultimate success. And I see what you mean about the nature
of the OSS communities of the various platforms. Actually, my biggest
fear for IronRuby is that the community won't port enough of the native
components of the Ruby libraries to make it a truly viable option,
exactly because the .NET OSS community isn't as robust, so engaging Ruby
developers to step in and help get the work done does seem absolutely
critical, in retrospect far more critical than convincing existing .NET
developers to slowly start dipping their toes in IronRuby, as progress
in that direction is not likely to move the platform towards parity with
the other Ruby interpreters, which is the key component. Thanks for the
schooling.
06cb81aee682ca515b16582d25bb8fb4?d=identicon&s=25 Philippe Monnet (Guest)
on 2009-11-06 02:43
(Received via mailing list)
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