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Yehuda Katz on Why It's Harder Than It Looks

Agenda:

7:00 Pizza/Beer/Networking

7:30 Intros/Host/Every Day Carry

7:45 Rails + Node + Mongo = Real-time Dashboard
[Samer Masry]

8:00 Why It's Harder Than It Looks [Yehuda Katz]

9:00 End

[Main Talk]

It's Harder Than It Looks : Tokaido, Bundler
and the Benefits of Complexity

Yehuda Katz is a member of the Ruby on Rails core team and is known for voicing strong opinions. This talk will not disappoint. Yehuda will talk deep tech as well as deep design philosophy. He will use Tokaido as a backdrop for the discussion. Tokaido is a project to create a binary distribution of Ruby so that Ruby, and all of the compiled elements of the standard library, come in a self-contained directory with no additional requirements or dependencies.

Abstract:
Last month, I started a Kickstarter project called Tokaido to make it easier to install Rails on OSX and get started developing Rails applications. The response was largely positive, and I met my funding goal rather quickly. On the flip side, a number of folks publicly asked why this project is necessary. Surely, they reasoned, it would not be very difficult to script a Rails installation.

This sort of reasoning that pervades the open source community, one that allows apparent simplicity to drive inappropriately simplistic solutions. Worse, it implies that non-trivial solutions are "overengineering" the problem. Because open source solutions have historically leaked implementation complexity into the public API, some end developers have become wary of large solutions, often assuming that the simpler the solution, the better.

This talk will address why simple solutions often fall down. As examples of this phenomenon, I will talk about some aspects of Tokaido that are unexpectedly difficult and how the Bundler project faced a similar reaction in some circles. I will use these examples to show how certain seemingly complex solutions lead to win-win results by eliminating sources of errors -- errors that even expert developers fall prey to. These kinds of solutions always require more work and more code than the simple solutions, but they are worth it.

About the Speaker

Yehuda Katz is a member of the Ember.js, Ruby on Rails and jQuery Core Teams; he spends his daytime hours at the startup he founded, Tilde Inc.. Yehuda is the co-author of the best-selling jQuery in Action, Rails 3 in Action, and is a contributor to Ruby in Practice. He spends most of his time hacking on open source--his main projects, along with others, like Thor, Handlebars and Janus --or traveling the world doing evangelism work. He blogs at http://yehudakatz.com and can be found on Twitter as @wycats.

[Talk 2]

Samer Masry from One Kings Lane will talk about using Rails, Node, and MongoDB to create a real-time dashboard.

Twitter: @smasry

Sponsors

One Kings Lane
One Kings Lane delivers the best of home decor at up to 70% off. Find top brands, designer-curated sales, and more. It’s a treasure hunt every day.

Telmate
Telmate is a Mac-based Ruby development shop innovating disruptive technology in the managed telecom industry. Self-funded and profitable, Telmate is not your normal web application gig. We develop industrial-strength telecom solutions.

Join or login to comment.

  • Samer M.

    slides from my talk available @ https://speakerdeck.com/u/smasry/p/in-realtime

    June 1, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Yehuda talks are always great, he had excellent examples of problems that are more hard that people realize.

    May 26, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Excellent! The OKL talk was a surprise win too

    May 25, 2012

  • Ron H.

    An excellent talk. @wycats did not get wrapped up in minutiae. It helps to look at the big picture whether it's problem solving or engaging users.

    May 25, 2012

  • Adam J. M.

    Good insights that can be used not only on Ruby on Rails but problem solving in any situation.

    May 25, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    informative. I liked the emphasis on the steps to solve problems in the open source community.

    May 25, 2012

  • Brian M.

    Awesome talk that wasn't necessarily about encodings or tokaido, but about problem solving.

    May 25, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    wycats was on point, lots of good learning!

    May 25, 2012

  • Anne S.

    Hey, there was someone at the beginning looking for meeting space for a Ruby Hack night. If you are still looking - send me information - I may have a space.

    May 25, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    The talk was informative on a technical level, and wrapped in excellent framework of problem solving skills that can be applied to any issue. Yehuda did a very nice job of providing great transparency into how he overcomes the kinds of challenges every programmer faces.

    May 25, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Great presentation

    May 25, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    He's a great speaker and the topic was interesting.

    May 25, 2012

  • Anne S.

    Excellent talk. Just enough information to get the point across without getting lost in technical details.

    May 25, 2012

  • Doug M.

    Great talk. Lots of good insight into the "casual" challenges of the web and what it takes to make Ruby so easy.

    May 25, 2012

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