Rails Summit Latin America: summary of the second day

The second day of Rails Summit Latin America 2009 was awesome!

Richard Kilmer talked about HotCocoa and MacRuby for the OS X. I found it interesting to see the efforts of Apple in order to make Ruby so great a language for their OS as Objective-C. I also got to know a little better about the Mac world, which is quite unknown to me.

Carlos Vilela gave an  overview of the use of  Ruby on projects at ThoughtWorks. It was basically a summary of the research Martin Fowler did concerning Ruby projects since 2006 at the company. What is remarkable about this research is that the majority of projects were considered to have made the right choice as to the use of Ruby and many developers reported a productivity boost of at least twice. Nevertheless, there must be some care regarding the overuse of metaprogramming.

Marcos Tapajós gave a presentation on Apache CouchDB, a document oriented database that can be accessed via a  RESTful JSON API. I had already heard about it, but it was quite new stuff for me. He also commented on the tools that allows for easy integration with Rails. From what I understood, it´s a great option to achive highly scalable systems. I definitely want to experiment with it in the near future.

Leonardo Borges, now a consultant of ThoughtWorks, talked about how to introduce JRuby in a Java project. He actually showed an approach to evolve an existing Java application using Rails. The idea was to package the application in a jar file and put it in the loadpath of the Rails application.

Vinícius Teles spoke about his path until the establishment of his product be on the net. Actually, he presented a short bio about his life since college and shared useful pieces of advice and lessons he learned in his professional (and personal) life. I strongly recommend watching his talk, which is available here (in portuguese).

To top it off, Obie Fernandez delivered an inspiring talk on the art of application development. He endorses application development is a craft and in order for one to be excellent there is no other way but to practice and practice and practice.

Overall, I really enjoyed attending this conference and look forward to the next edition!

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