>   I'm new to ruby and vim. Is it possible to ask vim to ident a piece 
> of ruby code? I know it does syntax highlighting, so, I suppose it may 
> be able to format the code.

The best way is to include the following in your .vimrc:

filetype plugin on 		"Turn ftplugins on
filetype indent on 		"Turn ftindent on

That will work for languages other than ruby, too.

-Michael

P.S.  Note that you type those two lines verbatim.  You can put them on
one line, like "filetype indent plugin on".  Happy vimming!  :)