Lone Star Ruby Conference V schedule

Thursday 11th August 2011

Friday 12th August 2011

  • A Dickens of A Keynote

    by James Edward Gray II

    Welcome Keynote

    At 9:15am to 10:00am, Friday 12th August

    Coverage slide deck

  • Misunderstanding

    by Glenn Vanderburg

    As programmers, we're familiar with complex logic and decisions: complex boolean expressions, long if/else cascades, and convoluted cases. But we quickly learn to avoid them as much as possible, finding ways to simplify. That's because even though computers can handle that complex stuff, we humans like simple logic. We have trouble internalizing complex lines of reasoning. Our bias toward simple explanations shows in all kinds of ways. It affects how we think about politics, science, economics, and yes, programming. And it can lead us astray. Some things really are complicated, and to understand them properly requires thinking about the complexities. If we insist on simple explanations—or just default to them because we don't think very hard about it—we can reach the wrong conclusions. This talk will explore how to think about some important programming topics that are often misunderstood. You may leave the talk with your mind changed. You may simply find your position strengthened. At the very least, I hope you'll learn some new, clear ways of explaining things to those around you, helping them to think clearly about complex issues.

    At 10:00am to 10:45am, Friday 12th August

    Coverage video

  • Exceptional Ruby

    by Avdi Grimm

    You know how to raise and rescue exceptions. But do you know how they work, and how how to structure a robust error handling strategy for your app? Starting out with an in-depth walk-through of Ruby's Ruby's rich failure handling mechanisms -- including some features you may not have known about -- we'll move on to present strategies for implementing a cohesive error-handling policy for your application, based on real-world experience.

    At 11:15am to 12:00pm, Friday 12th August

  • Rails 3.1 Whirlwind Tour

    by Ben Scheirman

    Rails 3.1 introduces a lot of new changes. In this session we'll cover most of the changes, including how to take advantage of them.

    From Reversible Migrations, the new Asset Pipeline, Coffee Script, SASS, and even HTTP Streaming.

    This will be a code-heavy talk demonstrating many of the new features in Rails 3.1.

    At 11:15am to 12:00pm, Friday 12th August

  • As a language, can we make Ruby on Rails as historically significant as Latin, Ancient Greek or Sanskrit?

    by Malcolm Arnold

    Ruby on Rails is a dying language. The same as the ones that came before it. Eventually, it will deprecate and be relegated to the history books. Does anyone know what the cultures or values of Fortran, Cobol, Pascal or Basic were? Does anyone know what was specifically accomplished with them? If you do know, do you really think that anyone besides a small circle within the tech-geek world cares?

    Only a few uber geeks still speak Latin, Greek or Sanskit. Yet, the entire planet knows about these languages and what they contributed. They care not just because of the monuments built, most of which have turned to dust and have become fables, but because of the ideas, culture and values that were created and passed on through the generations. Each of these languages created a distinct culture whose memorable flame burns eternal and contributed to the planet.

    What culture, if any, will Ruby on Rails create?

    The efficiency of Ruby on Rails, the demand for it, the convergence of economic and technical forces provide the tools and incentives to create a culture of our choosing that could be memorable for decades and longer.

    Will we seize the opportunity to create lasting positive change?

    Within 8 months of Ruby Nuby's first meeting, it has grown to over 700 members with training locations in 3 countries and multiple university partners . Ruby Nuby will present a systematic plan of how we can make Ruby on Rails as memorable as Latin, Sanskrit or Ancient Greek due the culture, ideas and values we will create and pass on.

    At 1:00pm to 1:45pm, Friday 12th August

  • Ten Things I Hate About Ruby

    by Hal Fulton

    We all love Ruby. But let's face it: It isn't perfect. We each may have a personal list of complaints. Yours will vary; this is mine. These are the things about Ruby semantics and the Ruby core that I find counter-intuitive, difficult to remember, incomplete, improperly designed, or not quite adequate. There might even be one or two notes here on syntax, the most fundamental level of any language. And "hate" may be too strong a word; but once in a while, we have to ask what is lacking in our favorite tool, so that someday when replace it, we will have something better (whether that thing is called "Ruby 2.0" or something else entirely).

    At 1:00pm to 1:45pm, Friday 12th August

  • Consuming the Twitter Streaming API with Ruby and MongoDB

    by Jeff Linwood

    Want to build your next application off of live Twitter updates? Twitter provides a streaming API that you can filter by username, keyword, or geo-location. Using a couple of great Ruby gems, we can store tweets from the streaming API into MongoDB, a NoSQL store that's perfect for analysis.

    I'll go over the basics of the Twitter API, MongoDB, the mongo and tweetstream ruby gems, and how to bring it all together into a sample application.

    At 1:45pm to 2:30pm, Friday 12th August

    Coverage slide deck

  • Practical Metaprogramming: "Modeling Thought"

    by Steven G. Harms

    ... Or, Lessons Learned While Using Ruby's MP System to Model a 2,500 Year-Old, Dead Language

    During LSRC III's Reject Conf, I began a project to model the linguistic behavior of verbs in Classical Latin. Owing to the irregularity of human communication, modeling the provision of unambiguous answers (return values) to ambiguously asked things (flexible / incomplete method calls) might have required hundreds, if not thousands, of method definitions or static values entered in a database.

    But what if heuristics could be given to a Ruby class such that it "thought" as language learners are taught to think? What if it could be taught to be flexible in respecting the ambiguous calls given and to still give precise, correct answers back - as human language learners are capable of doing? By adopting this design paradigm, code could become leaner and more reflective of human cognitive process.

    Thankfully for Rubyists, this is not a dream, this is reality. Our programs can operate more intelligently, more heuristically, and more insightfully. We can save ourselves days of development time by integrating this next tier of metaprogramming patterns I propose to demonstrate. While I will demonstrate these patterns by modeling linguistics based on the LatinVerb library (https://github.com/sgharms/Latin...), these techniques have wider application across problem domains.

    At 1:45pm to 2:30pm, Friday 12th August

    Coverage slide deck

  • Accelerated native mobile app development with the Ti gem

    by Wynn Netherland ⚡

    Titanium mobile is fast becoming the native platform of choice for Rubyists. This talk will show you how to put your Ruby skills to use to write native apps for iOS and Android faster than you ever thought possible including:

    • The Ti gem which offers Rails-like generators for views, models, and other project items
    • CoffeeScript to write JavaScript using idioms familiar to Rubyists
    • Compass and Sass to write JavaScript stylesheets
    • Rake to compile, build, and deploy your apps

    At 2:30pm to 3:15pm, Friday 12th August

    Coverage slide deck

  • Procrastinate your code: Do it later.

    by Zach Moazeni

    You can't do it all. Sometimes breaking the request/response cycle is just too constraining and you need to bust out of it. Enter asynchronous processing.

    Delayed Job and Resque, two takes at solving this problem, are popular tools. We'll explore their differences, demonstrate how to get up and running in minutes, and show you how to find the best fit for your project.

    At 2:30pm to 3:15pm, Friday 12th August

  • Much Ado About CoffeeScript

    by Mattt Thompson

    CoffeeScript will ship with Rails 3.1 to replace RJS as the preferred way to dynamically generate JavaScript. It's a new language that take the best parts of Ruby, Python, and others to ease the worst parts of JavaScript. More than being the new kid on the Rails block however, CoffeeScript is mind-expanding in ways that will make you remember the first time you ever gave Ruby a try. This presentation will take you through the basics of CoffeeScript, starting with a crash course in syntax, all the way to a working application.

    At 3:30pm to 4:15pm, Friday 12th August

    Coverage slide deck

  • The world runs on bad software

    by Brandon Keepers

    The world is full of poorly structured, overly verbose, untested code. But, a lot of people are doing amazing things and making insane amounts of money from bad software. As someone who might call himself a “software architect” or “craftsman”, this is difficult reality for me to accept. This talk explores the balance between pragmatism and perfection.

    Ruby, being as expressive and versatile as it is, makes it easy for newbies to write alien code that looks more like Java than anything resembling our beloved language, while those versed in "The Ruby Way" spend their days and nights obsessing over how to refactor ten lines of working code into three.

    There is a cost to writing good software. It takes time to write automated tests, refactor code, and do things right. You may miss opportunities to get your software in front of real people, get essential feedback, or even launch at all.

    I have seen and often written both abysmal software that makes me want to cry and glorious code that would make any mother proud; both were perfectly adequate for the task at hand.

    Bad software that ships is better than good software that nobody uses. Learn how to strike a balance between pragmatism and perfection.

    At 3:30pm to 4:15pm, Friday 12th August

    Coverage slide deck

  • More DSL, Less Pain

    by Evan Light

    One much loved feature of Ruby is the ease with which the object model allows for internal DSLs. However, "metaprogramming" code, in Ruby, can be hard on the eyes which written in large quantities. "Lispy", a gem by Ryan Allen, was a first step toward a generic decoupling of internal DSLs from their implementation. I forked it, took it a ways further, and used it in a significant refactoring of a gem. During this presentation, I'll demonstrate how the LISPish notion that code is data can go a long way toward easing the burden of implementing internal DSLs

    At 4:15pm to 5:00pm, Friday 12th August

    Coverage slide deck

  • OPI (Other people's infrastructure)

    by Brian Smith

    In business, OPM(other people's money), is the preferred way to start a business. In today's web economy it is now possible to get your app up and running quick by using OPI. This can include everything from server hosting to video processing.

    At 4:15pm to 5:00pm, Friday 12th August

  • Keynote

    by Obie Fernandez

    Keynote Day 1

    At 5:10pm to 6:00pm, Friday 12th August

Saturday 13th August 2011

  • Beautiful Payment Systems with OAuth

    by Tom Brown

    A simple OAuth based protocol called OpenTransact will be described.

    Payments made across financial service providers using the opentransact ruby gem will be demonstrated.

    At 8:45am to 9:30am, Saturday 13th August

    Coverage slide deck

  • Blow Up Your Views

    by Jeff Casimir

    Whether you're new to Rails or have been around few years, chances are that your views are primitive. Detonate what you know about how views are written and let's start over.

    In this session we'll discuss...
    - Why your views suck
    - Instance variables are stupid
    - Kill helpers and work with objects
    - Drawing the line between "C" and "V"
    - Treating views as API customers
    - Rethinking templating

    By the end you'll be dying to blow up your views.

    At 8:45am to 9:30am, Saturday 13th August

    Coverage slide deck

  • Getting started with ZeroMQ

    by Ross Andrews

    I'd like to go through some of the fundamental concepts of the messaging library ZeroMQ, and talk about how to use it to architect distributed applications.

    At 9:30am to 10:15am, Saturday 13th August

  • The Ruby Racer: Under the Hood

    by Charles Lowell

    Have you ever had to implement the same validation logic twice: once in JavaScript for the browser and once in Ruby for the server? Has there ever been a JavaScript library like handlebars.js that you'd love to use server side, but can't because well... it's in JavaScript and not Ruby? Or perhaps a time or two you've been tempted to eval() some anonymous Ruby code, but you didn't dare because it's an unspeakably dangerous thing to do?

    The solutions to these and many other problems are suddenly and elegantly within your grasp when you've got the power of a JavaScript interpreter right there with you in your ruby process.

    Sound crazy? difficult? It's easier than you might think. This talk will focus on The Ruby Racer: a gem that brings the superb V8 interpteter to Ruby. We'll see how to call JavaScript functions directly from Ruby; how to call Ruby methods directly from JavaScript; how to extend Ruby classes with JavaScript; how to extend your JavaScript objects with Ruby, and a slew of other ways of managing their interaction that will bend your mind.

    At 9:30am to 10:15am, Saturday 13th August

    Coverage slide deck

  • Google Go for Ruby Hackers

    by Eleanor McHugh

    Go is a statically-compiled systems language geared to developing scalable and type-safe applications with the light touch of a dynamic language.

    In this session we'll explore Go from a Rubyists perspective, examining the CSP-based concurrency model which has gained it wide-spread press coverage, it's inference-based approach to dynamic typing and the inheritance-free object model this supports. Where possible I'll tie these concepts back to familiar Ruby idioms.

    Along the way we'll meet gotest (Go's testing and benchmarking framework), CGO (for linking to C libraries), goinstall (the remote package installer) and Go's powerful reflection and type manipulation features.

    By the end of the session you'll be comfortable reading Go source code, have a basic feel for developing with the language and the necessary background to get started writing your own concurrent Go programs.

    At 10:30am to 11:15am, Saturday 13th August

    Coverage slide deck

  • Javascript for people who didn't learn Javascript

    by Jesse Wolgamott

    Javascript is easy to get into, and jQuery made it easy to do powerful things. But what about prototype inheritance? Binding? What about all the things you should know about the language before building Node apps. We'll go over the concepts through code examples and figure this whole thing out together.

    At 10:30am to 11:15am, Saturday 13th August

  • State of the Art Telephony with Ruby

    by Ben Klang

    The past 10 years has seen a revolution in the way we make phone calls and even the way we think about a telephone. Ruby is an ideal language to create power tools for building telephony applications. In this talk we will demonstrate how Ruby is the state of the art when it comes to interacting with the telephone network. Using the open source Adhearsion framework, we will demonstrate how you can easily integrate with existing Ruby applications or migrate legacy systems. We will cover how to get started immediately using cloud-based services, as well as how to build, deploy and manage your applications in-house. Network permitting, we will finish with a live demo designed to inspire ideas for ways you can integrate telephony into your application.

    At 11:15am to 12:00pm, Saturday 13th August

  • Testing Javascript with Jasmine

    by Tim Tyrrell

    A lot of developers do an excellent job of unit testing their server-side logic but then leave their client-side javascript as the new "spaghetti code" dumping ground and it doesn't have to be that way! Jasmine is a simple DOM-less javascript testing framework with a familiar RSpec-like syntax that removes most excuses for not testing your code. You will get an overview of Jasmine and how to utilize it in a variety of project environments from vanilla javascript to Rails to jQuery plugins. We will also explore where CoffeeScript and some helper libraries fit into making the testing of your javascript as simple and pleasurable as possible.

    At 11:15am to 12:00pm, Saturday 13th August

  • The Ballad of Goliath, EventMachine, and MongoDB

    by Mando Escamilla

    In a world where software evolves at a breakneck pace, ONE piece of technology emerges as something truly interesting. And another. And another. So, like 3 different pieces.


    Then, you realize that everything is not what it seems...

    From the producers of a bunch of stuff you've never heard of and the director of some other stuff comes the story of what happens when 3 young, happy-go-lucky pieces of software get together and try to find their way in this mixed-up, crazy world.

    At 1:00pm to 1:45pm, Saturday 13th August