Sessions at RailsConf 2009 about Ruby on Rails

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Monday 4th May 2009

  • Building a Mini-Google: High-Performance Computing in Ruby

    by Ilya Grigorik

    High-performance computing may not be Ruby’s strength on the surface, but there is a great number of gems and third party packages which are often overlooked when it comes to this topic. We will assume no prior knowledge of PageRank (Google’s ranking algorithm) and will walk through the basic theory and computational challenges behind it. Along the way, we will look at a hands on example of computing PageRank for a 1-million page web, and the tools behind it:

    • Ruby GSL – Working with GNU Scientific Library
    • Linalg – Ruby Linear Algebra
    • NArray – Numerical Ruby
    • And others…

    As a bonus, you’ll find that the ideas behind PageRank are surprisingly simple and powerful (no math-wiz certification required) and can be easily applied to many existing social and content networks – better recommendations, search, and discovery.

    On Monday 4th May

    Coverage slide deck

Tuesday 5th May 2009

  • The Even Darker Art of Rails Engines

    by James Adam

    When I started talking about the idea of ‘Rails Engines’ a few years ago, everyone thought I was crazy. Some people said it was stupid, or just plain evil. Despite that, the ability to write simple yet powerful plugins is baked into the core of Rails 2.3.

    But heed the words of Uncle Ben: “With great power, comes great responsibility!”

    In this session, we’ll discuss how to best take advantage of ‘engines’, in which situations engine plugins are appropriate and those where they aren’t, and how to avoid some of the common issues that can arrive when developing with engine-style plugins.

    When we’re done, you’ll be in the best position to take advantage of this newly-sanctified functionality in your own projects.

    At 10:45am to 11:35am, Tuesday 5th May

    Coverage slide deck

Wednesday 6th May 2009

  • Rails Metal, Rack and Sinatra

    by Adam Wiggins

    Rails 2.3 introduces a hot new feature: Rails Metal. Metal allows you to build Rack endpoints for selected URLs in your app. Optimize your high-frequency, low-complexity actions with Rails Metal and get a 2x – 3x performance boost.

    Even better: you can use Sinatra, the microframework that everyone’s talking about, from Rails Metal. Capture the speed and elegance of Sinatra from within your existing Rails app!

    This talk will provide a brief overview of the basics of Rack and Sinatra, so no prior knowledge of either project is required.

    At 10:45am to 11:35am, Wednesday 6th May

    Coverage slide deck

  • Twitter on Rails

    by Michael Bleigh

    Twitter’s content and APIs make it one of the best targets around for creating mashups. It’s now easier than ever to do so using TwitterAuth, a Rails gem/plugin that utilizes Twitter as a Single Sign-on provider (SSO).

    Material will include:

    Generating a TwitterAuth application using Rails templates
    Navigating the Twitter API
    Harnessing the power of Twitter Search
    Watching an entire application get built…live!

    At 10:45am to 11:35am, Wednesday 6th May

  • Rails and Legacy Databases

    by Brian P. Hogan

    This session will show how we built a Rails application around a database that didn’t even come close to following the conventions that Rails wants you to use. We’ll show how we used views and some Ruby techniques to make the database appear to conform, and we’ll show that it’s really not as hard as people make it sound.

    We’ll also talk about other strategies we’ve used to migrate data from legacy schemas to new Rails schemas. Attendants should feel free to submit some examples to us beforehand.

    At 1:50pm to 2:40pm, Wednesday 6th May

Thursday 7th May 2009