Ruby 1.9 and Rails 3.0

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I’ve always been a big proponent of Ruby 1.9, I make no bones about it. My question is why wouldn’t you be? It’s faster, more powerful, easier to use, and makes things a lot clearer and cleaner than 1.8. So why then are pretty much all of us still running our applications on 1.8.x? Great question, and as far as I can tell there is really only 1 answer.

That answer? Because no one else is. It’s stupid really, but it’s the truth. We’re all afraid to run our applications in 1.9 because we don’t know many other people that are. Because of that it makes it hard for you to make your application work with 1.9 because all those gems and libraries  you use aren’t 1.9 compatible, so you’re forced to keep running your app on 1.8. And so the cycle continues.

Enter Rails 3.0. Here is a major upgrade to the most prominent web framework in the Ruby community, and I would argue the reason that most of us got into Ruby in the first place. This upgrade will force us all to make some pretty severe changes to our applications to make them fully compatible.  The changes in ActiveRecord alone are so sweeping and massive that we, as a community, are going to have to put some serious time into upgrade our applications. Yet, despite this, we are all going to do it.

Why are we all going to upgrade to Rails 3.0? Because it  looks cool and sexy, and we want those great new features and all those performance enhancements to make our applications run faster. Which leads me back to Ruby 1.9.

In Rails 3.0 they are dropping support for Ruby 1.8.6 and below in favor of Ruby >1.8.7 and >1.9.1. I propose that Rails 3.0 becomes Ruby 1.9 compatible only. Think about it. What a perfect opportunity for us all. We are all going to have to upgrade the libraries and gems we maintain to support Rails 3.0 and we are going to be upgrading our applications to Rails 3.0, so why not go full steam into Ruby 1.9?

There is no better time than now to push forward into the future as a whole community. Let’s put Ruby 1.8 behind and reap the benefits of what Ruby 1.9 has to offer. What do you say? Can we do it? I think we can.