From Startup to MVP with Rails. Fast Business Solutions

22 March 2013
By Kirill Timofeev, Software Project Manager

In 2012 we started the DataArt Ruby Competence Center to consolidate our Ruby and Ruby on Rails knowledge and make joint efforts aimed at promoting it. A group of enthusiasts took part in various themed events to spread their knowledge in the programming world. Due to their benefits, Ruby and Rails has become firmly entrenched in the project activities of the company. We even developed an ETL spider for semantic data using Ruby and Ruby on Rails.

Ruby is a programming language, the latest version of which (Ruby 2.0.0-p0) was released on February 24th 2013.

Ruby is in the Top-10 of the most popular programming languages, according to the TIOBE rating. I’m pretty sure that in the near future it’ll be more wide-spread than PHP. Time passes by, new technologies arise in and PHP will lose its popularity.

From Startup to MVP with Rails.  Fast Business Solutions

Ruby on Rails is an open source full-stack web framework for creating web applications.

A small team of three can get a viable product into beta really quickly using Rails. It’s a well suited framework for start-ups, travel, media web applications, and others.

There is a good bunch of well-known products built using this technology stack: Twitter, Github, Scribd, Hulu, Groupon, Airbnb, Redmine and even UrbanDictionary use Rails.

I suppose that you know Twitter’s history. It was initially built on Ruby on Rails, but lately was half rebuilt using Scala. The truth is – everything changed when Twitter had millions of users.

What makes Ruby on Rails popular?

  1. It allows for fast and easy programming;
  2. The framework helps to accelerate start-up projects to reach the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) stage;
  3. It is used for building powerful web applications;
  4. Developers like to use it. Happy developer = hardworking developer.

From Startup to MVP with Rails.  Fast Business SolutionsWe’ve successfully built a variety of good projects using the Ruby on Rails framework. We can deliver a project using Rails 20-30% faster than using other technologies. Here is just one example of how it works:

One of the world’s major music labels needed a DSP platform and Rights Management-app. The client has a lots of assets to manage and lots of lines of business associated with artists and talent. This business is impossible without efficient software systems and they needed to rebuild the core of their technology stack to support future growth. From about 300 legacy applications we needed to create a platform and build new applications to support its daily operations. For the client’s product we used Java Spring and Ruby on Rails. A draft version of the product was ready in just four months. Total duration of the project – about nine months.

Ruby on Rails is not a panacea for every project. But if you need a fast business solution you won’t find a better option.

By the way
An interesting role in the promotion of Ruby was made by “Why the lucky stiff”. He published an online book called “Why’s (poignant) Guide to Ruby”. It is supposed to be about Ruby, but started this way:

“Pretend that you’ve opened this book (although you probably have opened this book), just to find a huge onion right in the middle crease of the book. (The manufacturer of the book has included the onion at my request.)
So you’re like, “Wow, this book comes with an onion!” (Even if you don’t particularly like onions, I’m sure you can appreciate the logistics of shipping any sort of produce discreetly inside of an alleged programming manual.)
Then you ask yourself, “Wait a minute. I thought this was a book on Ruby, the incredible new programming language from Japan. And although I can appreciate the logistics of shipping any sort of produce discreetly inside of an alleged programming manual: Why an onion? What am I supposed to do with it?”
No. Please don’t puzzle over it. You don’t need to do anything with the onion. Set the onion aside and let it do something with you”.

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