[OSM-dev] osm on rails

Anselm Hook anselm at hook.org
Thu Jul 20 20:43:41 BST 2006

> Rails developers are shackled to MVC whether they want it or not, and
> Rails is fundamentally a one-to-many RDBMS system.  How does this play
> nicely with GIS-y stuff?  With wiki versioning?  How will Rails'
> automatically-generated SQL not be *slower* than what we have right

It is slower; a lot slower.

Also does ROR support PostgreSQL spatial types?  (Assuming OSM eventually
moves to PostgreSQL).

> All else being equal, I think the main benefit of the world jumping on
> the Rails bandwagon will be *Ruby* becoming more popular as a language.
> Again, remember crap-tastic technologies like Java applets *promoting*
> Java as a language.

Well Java was marketing bullshit; it is still not even free.  Ruby and ROR
are enthusiastically supported from the bottom up.

Also Ruby and ROR are emerging when the web space is understood and mature
(if not already verging on obsolescence).  So they embody best practices
in that now well understood space.  Migrations for example are one
particularily nice aspect of ROR.

However personally I feel that appplications should consist of small
pieces loosely joined; centered around the datastore and not around the
user interface which is just one small part of the whole thing.  ROR is a
bit monolithic.

> Now if porting to *OSM* to Rails is a good excuse for cleaning up the
> server code, for simplying the setup of a development environment, for
> fleshing out the rest of the REST API, and padding our CV's (seriously),
> then I'm all for it.

ROR enthusiasts would probably work pretty hard to make the port; and it's
a good community; high signal low noise...  the final product would be
nice. It probably doesn't make a huge difference either way.

 - a

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