The source file lib\ruby\1.8\drb\drb.rb defines the class DRbObject. I
don't understand the initialize method. Why would I ever want to pass
something other than nil for the first parameter? The comment above
the initialize method says that is used to create a proxy/stub for a
local object. Why would I want to do that?

The typical way to use this is
  
proxy = DRbObject.new(nil, url)      

-- 
R. Mark Volkmann
Partner, Object Computing, Inc.