Notes from YEGRB 0.2

Thanks again to everyone that came out to YEGRB 0.2. We had an even bigger turnout than last time with lots of new faces, as well as people coming back from the last meeting.

We heard the feedback from last time and kept things moving along at quick pace. Thanks to our great speakers we were able to achieve this goal and wrapped on schedule with time left to go to Pub 1905 for a few drinks.

The talks themselves where great and started off with Chris Brulak (cbrulak) presenting on Elxn41.ca. Chris’ application provides a platform for participants to debate and follow the political issues of the day. This discussion is meant to be interactive, and emphasise a dialog between members. Chris contrasted the conversation that happens on Elxn41.ca with a service such as Twitter where participants shout into a crowded space. In developing Elxn41.ca Chris used a number of popular gems including authlogic and acts_as_versioned. He tried the Twitter authentication component in authlogic but decided to use the twitter-auth gem for authentication in it’s place. If you’d like to try this application just visit http://elxn41.ca and login with the beta password ‘democracyrocks’. Chris is actively looking for developers to help build out the Elxn41.ca feature set. If you’d like to help out contact him at elxn41@elxn41.ca.

The next speaker was Sean Ouimet (@skepticsean) presenting on Sinatra and Rack. Sean walked everyone through the basics of Sinatra, including how to create a web application and declared your routes and the code which handles them. He then moved into some more advanced Sinatra scenarios. In particular his demonstrtation of how to embed multiple Sinatra apps in a single Rack application was intriqing as it can be used to deploy Rails and Sinatra in the same application. We’ve included Sean’s slides below if you’d like to see his code again.

Our last lightning talk was by Mark Bennett (@MarkBennett). He presented a new gem he’d written called Adman which makes it easy to share your Sinatra or Rails application using Bonjour (aka Zeroconf). With Adman anyone can find and resolve your applications IP automatically without using a DNS server or publishing your IP in advance. This is especially useful at hackups, conferences, or RailsCamps where access to the Internet is limited. If you’d like to try Adman for yourself just run, “gem install adman”. Check out Adman on GitHub and read the wiki for more details. Adman is under active development, and Mark want’s to make using Bonjour in your app a one liner.

With the lighting talks wrapped up on time some of the attendees with iPad’s kindly demonstrated them for the rest of the group. Reg Cheramy (@rcheramy) from Edistorm demonstrated some of his favourite features and apps already running on the iPad as well as some development work he’s done with the iPad. He wasn’t the only one with an iPad as Cam Linke and another attendee also brought their iPads out. Thanks guys, the iPad looks like it’s going to be another winner for Apple. Can’t wait to order mine at the end of the month.

Thanks again to all the attendees who made it out to this months meetup. Our primary mission is to connect local Ruby enthusiasts, so seeing how well attended the meetups have been is really encouraging. I know there are still lots of you out there who haven’t made it out to an event yet, but we’re looking forward to seeing you at YEGRB 0.3. Also watch for us to explore new ways of connecting the Ruby community in the coming months.