Montreal on Rails #3

Oct 03, 2007
With our new digs, things were better than ever at last night's MoR. It's really great to see so many people sharing their knowledge, and just participating in the Montreal community. Aside from my presentation, Gary, and Francois both gave outstanding talks.

Javascripting for Rails Devs

Gary Haran talked to us about how to use prototype.js to ease some of the pains of writing javascript, and get yourself a beautiful ruby-like API. Since Gary taught me everything I know about Javascript while I was working at ZipLocal, I have been pushing him to share his knowledge with the masses, and he finally did with last night's presentation. Javascript (especially when combined with prototype) is awesome, and I hope this will be the first of many presentations from Gary on how to harness the awesome power in JS with less of the pain.

Piston: Vendor branch management made simple

François Beausoleil, the author of Piston, the excellent vendor branch management gem, was nice enough to come all the way to Montreal, and talk to us about his creation. In a nutshell, Piston aims to solve all of the problems that you get, when you depend on svn:externals to manage plugins in your rails app. Things like a new revision of a plugin breaking all your tests, and blocking deployment of a critical bug fix come to mind. I had heard a lot about Piston before his talk, but I am now fully sold, and will spend some time converting my current apps to use it this afternoon.

After all the talks were over, I had some great conversations with some of the awesome Montrealers who attend these great events. I talked Giraffes with Mat, iPhone(s) with Carl, number puzzles with Daniel, debated test macros with Marc-André, and discussed the latest and greatest in photography world with Alain Pilon. All in all, a great evening. Thanks to Fred and Ben for the space!

For more on last night's event, check out the photos, and my post about my presentation. As I said in my other post, video of last night's presentations will be available very soon.