> The reason behind all this is that I fear needless 
> fragmentation. The Ruby community grows, it will have to 
> fragment to some extent, we can't populate a mailing list 
> with ten times more people. Rails split off the main lists, 
> main IRC, even gets its own conference. Fine, it seems a 
> clear cut distinction (but given all other useful web 
> frameworks in Ruby, I doubt it deserves to be this clear cut).

I organize Vancouver Ruby Association (vanruby.com), and found that during
our meetings 70% of the attendance interest was on Rails. We recently did a
presentation on SOAP4R, a great technology, but what everyone was interested
in was how it applied to Rails. As the talk went on, we discussed Rails
ActionWebService and such.

When interest is this high, and people are focused on the implementation,
rather than the foundation, it would seem natural to encourage conferences
such as Canada on Rails, which are specifically geared for such interest.

Once you have gone to an event such a CoR, and have a superficial
understanding of the implementation, then you dive deeper into the language,
and go for RubyConf, and more core technologies.

I have been learning Rails for several months now, and at first I was simply
learning the MVC principles and architecture, but once I want to dive deeper
into the functionality and build a serious application, I found I needed
very drastically to get familiar with the language it was built on, Ruby. If
I didn't have the entrance point of Rails, I likely would not be organizing
the Rails conference, which will in turn promote Ruby by default :)

Warmest regards,
Nathaniel