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On Tue, 2007-25-09 at 12:53 +0900, 7stud -- wrote:

> Thanks for the well written post.  Can you give a little more insight 
> into how you came to be using ruby as your programming language of 
> choice instead of any of the other languages you mentioned.  I know why 
> you might choose ruby over C/C++ or Java, but what lead you to choose 
> ruby over python, which as far as I can tell is ruby's closest neighbor.


I'm not Bill, but I can give you a data point related to the one you're
looking for.  I'm a former Python user and (local) evangelist.  Way back
when Ruby was still 0.9.something, I was using Python in my work and at
home all the time.  I was doing the former, in fact, despite a company
directive saying that we should only be using C++, VB (since I was
writing a VB toolkit at the time) and tcl, of all things.  (Java was
being added at the end of my tenure in that position.)  I did this
because I found Python easy to program in and especially well-suited to
the kinds of code generation I had to do to fill out all the crappy
boilerplate that dominates C/C++/Java code.  It was also well-suited to
driving tests.

I dropped Python because of its community.

When I started with Python -- back about v1.2 or 1.3 -- the Python
community was mostly friendly and helpful.  It was a joy to be in.  It
changed and it changed dramatically over time.  Now I see a coterie of
people who basically sneer at anybody who isn't in their circle and who
are utterly intolerant of viewpoints not their own.  And, as you can
often see in Ruby circles, they have an alarming tendency to go to other
communities to do their sneering.  The friendly, warm, vibrant community
surrounding a decent language -- and I still do think Python is a good
language; I'm probably unusual among Rubistas for this -- vanished over
the years and was replaced by people I really didn't want anything to do
with.

As a language I think Ruby is slightly (and only slightly) better than
Python.  It has many strengths over Python -- especially with its
metaprogramming capabilities -- but it also has several weaknesses
(beginning with performance and library availability).  I would not be
upset if I had to program in Python professionally, but I would also not
be upset if I had to program in Ruby professionally either.

What makes Ruby a winner over Python for me is its community.  It is
(mostly) friendly and (mostly) welcoming of new people and thoughts.
And while the constantly-moving target of the language can be a bit
frustrating, it's also a bit exhilarating to be there as the language
develops and matures.  To be there while the community crystallizes and
matures.  So for me the big thing that made me switch to Ruby was the
respective set of communities.

-- 
Michael T. Richter <ttmrichter / gmail.com> (GoogleTalk:
ttmrichter / gmail.com)
Experts in advanced countries underestimate by a factor of two to four
the ability of people in underdeveloped countries to do anything
technical. (Charles P Issawi)

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On Tue, 2007-25-09 at 12:53 +0900, 7stud -- wrote:
<BLOCKQUOTE TYPE=CITE>
<PRE>
<FONT COLOR="#000000">Thanks for the well written post.  Can you give a little more insight </FONT>
<FONT COLOR="#000000">into how you came to be using ruby as your programming language of </FONT>
<FONT COLOR="#000000">choice instead of any of the other languages you mentioned.  I know why </FONT>
<FONT COLOR="#000000">you might choose ruby over C/C++ or Java, but what lead you to choose </FONT>
<FONT COLOR="#000000">ruby over python, which as far as I can tell is ruby's closest neighbor.</FONT>
</PRE>
</BLOCKQUOTE>
<BR>
I'm not Bill, but I can give you a data point related to the one you're looking for.&nbsp; I'm a former Python user and (local) evangelist.&nbsp; Way back when Ruby was still 0.9.something, I was using Python in my work and at home all the time.&nbsp; I was doing the former, in fact, despite a company directive saying that we should only be using C++, VB (since I was writing a VB toolkit at the time) and tcl, of all things.&nbsp; (Java was being added at the end of my tenure in that position.)&nbsp; I did this because Iound Python easy to program in and especially well-suited to the kinds ofode generation I had to do to fill out all the crappy boilerplate that dominates C/C++/Java code.&nbsp; It was also well-suited to driving tests.<BR>
<BR>
I dropped Python because of its community.<BR>
<BR>
When I started with Python -- back about v1.2 or 1.3 -- the Python community was mostly friendly and helpful.&nbsp; It was a joy to be in.&nbsp; It changed and it changed dramatically over time.&nbsp; Now I see a coterie of people who basically sneer at anybody who isn't in their circle and who are utterly intolerant of viewpoints not their own.&nbsp; And, as you can oftenee in Ruby circles, they have an alarming tendency to go to other communities to do their sneering.&nbsp; The friendly, warm, vibrant community surrounding a decent language -- and I still do think Python is a good language; I'm probably unusual among Rubistas for this -- vanished over the years and was replaced by people I really didn't want anything to do with.<BR>
<BR>
As a language I think Ruby is slightly (and only slightly) better than Python.&nbsp; It has many strengths over Python -- especially with its metaprogramming capabilities -- but it also has several weaknesses (beginning with performance and library availability).&nbsp; I would not be upset if I had to program in Python professionally, but I would also not be upset if I hado program in Ruby professionally either.<BR>
<BR>
What makes Ruby a winner over Python for me is its community.&nbsp; It is (mostly) friendly and (mostly) welcoming of new people and thoughts.&nbsp; And while the constantly-moving target of the language can be a bit frustrating, it's also a bit exhilarating to be there as the language develops and matures.&nbsp; To be there while the community crystallizes and matures.&nbsp; So for me the big thing that made me switch to Ruby was the respective set of communities.<BR>
<BR>
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-- <BR>
<B>Michael T. Richter</B> &lt;ttmrichter / gmail.com&gt; (<B>GoogleTalk:</B> ttmrichter / gmail.com)<BR>
<I>Experts in advanced countries underestimate by a factor of two to four the ability of people in underdeveloped countries to do anything technical. (Charles P Issawi)</I>
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