> > The devil's advocate would ask, how much of that first four months was
> > devoted to Justin developing his expertise in the application itself?
> > Once you've mastered an application's logic, you have a distinct
> > advantage when re-implementing it in another environment.
> 
> I agree; I find that Ruby gives me an 11x increase ("Well, it's one
> faster, isn't it? It's not ten." ) in productivity over Ruby whenever I
> decide to rewrite a Ruby app in Ruby.
> 
> A good deal of development time is figuring out where the specs or goals
> are wrong or incomplete, and sorting things out.  Once I've written
> something,  in whatever language, porting it over (or simply rewriting
> it) almost always goes faster; there's less thinking involved.

Ok, but what about when you want to add new features to an existing
ruby app.  What if you're trying to beat your competitors to the
punch?  If nothing else, I'd pick ruby simply for the ease in hacking
something together quickly.  I just picked ruby up recently, and
thanks to the whole 'least surprise' business, I find that even though
I don't really know what I'm doing, I still manage to do things
exactly the right way on the first try the overwhelming majority of
the time.  In Java, and many other systems, it takes at least 2-3
rewrites of a feature before I'm really happy that I got the thing
right... and I know I'm not alone in this.  Almost no one ever designs
something totally new without making any mistakes.  Even Apple is
working on a 5th generation iPod.

I know people don't really like anecdotes, but Ruby gives me a warm
fuzzy feeling and Java simply doesn't.  I doubt I'd claim a 10x
improvement in productivity, but I can definitely say there's a
substantial one, and it's big enough that it's hard to measure.

And actually, so far, I don't think I could claim an '11x improvement
writing something in ruby over writing something in ruby'.  So far,
rewrites take me almost the same amount of time as the original code
took to write, because the limiting factor, thus far, seems to be my
typing speed.
-- 
Bob Aman