Tuesday, July 17, 2007


Sequel is a light-weight ORM that fills in the gaps where using ActiveRecord without rails doesn't fit your needs.

Gregory Brown has a nice little expose on it as the winner of the June 2007 Ruby Project Spotlight.

Introduction to .NET 3.0 for Architects
Keep your friends close and competition^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H alternative platforms closer. InfoQ has a great 50000 foot look at .NET 3.0.

Profiling your ails app with ruby-prof
Charlie Savage wrote a great article on doing some profiling on your rails app using ruby-prof. He discusses using both flat and graph (with associated call tree information) profiles to nuke performance hogs.

ruby-prof is a fast code profiler for Ruby. Its features include:
  • Speed - it is a C extension and therefore many times faster than the standard Ruby profiler.
  • Flat Profiles - similar to the reports generated by the standard Ruby profiler
  • Graph profiles - similar to GProf, these show how long a method runs, which methods call it and which methods it calls
  • Threads - supports profiling multiple threads simultaneously
  • Recursive calls - supports profiling recursive method calls
  • Reports - can generate both text and cross-referenced html reports
  • Output - can output to standard out or to a file

This plugin extends ActiveRecord::Base to add useful delegation features. For example: has_columns :from => :source, :only => ["title", "name"] has_column "title", :from => :source, :as => "source_title".

It really improves the conciseness of your code but in so doing hides your implementation adding a layer of indirection that may make your code a little more difficult to understand if the person reading your code does not know that AR-Delegation was used.

Exception Notifier
I use this with most of my projects that reside on remote customer networks where the only way for the application to give me a heads up is if it sends me an email with an attached problem report.

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I love solving real-world problems with code and systems (web apps, distributed systems and all the bits and pieces in-between).