Looking forward to LinuxWorld Expo SF 2007

Last year I was doing mobile development and there was interesting Linux-as-smartphone-OS stuff going on. Now I’m doing Ruby on Rails development and there’s interesting server grid stuff going on. Here’s what I’m looking forward to finding out more about (all of these are things I’ve been watching or directly researching already):
Continue reading “Looking forward to LinuxWorld Expo SF 2007”

Full Text Search refuses to be a black box

Once upon a time, before Google pwn3d internet search, there were several competing definitions for full text search. Altavista more or less gave you results matching the exact strings you gave it, but in a crazy order that made it painful to use. Excite (my favorite back then) used a dictionary to achieve stemming and synonym matches: searching for ‘dogs’ would also match documents that contained ‘canines’ or ‘dog’. Then Google blew them all away, and established a dominant set of expectations for how text search behaves.

I forgot about this, which is why I’m frustrated by the almost ridiculous complexity of the major server-side text search engines available right now. But it makes sense, once you learn what the options are.
Continue reading “Full Text Search refuses to be a black box”

Subversion 1.5 will include merge tracking

Despite Linus’ strident criticism of Subversion (in the 70 minute video he accuses Subversion, and then anybody who wrote it, and then anybody who likes it, of being ugly and stupid) I still use Subversion and I like it. Clearly compared to Linus I am ugly and stupid. OK fine. But I’m not switching to git now because my tiny teams have been fine with Subversion. Maybe later I’ll give git a whirl.
Continue reading “Subversion 1.5 will include merge tracking”

Impressions of Ruby on Rails from an ex J2EE developer (me)

A friend who is working primarily in the J2EE technology world (as I was, until early 2006) asked me for a how’s-it-going with respect to Ruby and Rails.

The short version:
– Ruby is fun to program in, as you’ve probably heard
– Rails is over-hyped, but it’s still quite good (definitely not perfect)
– I like the productivity of Ruby on Rails but I wouldn’t call it a silver bullet by any means
– Ruby performance was bad and is getting less bad, and can even be good if you do what the experts say
– The real gem (har har) in the Ruby and Rails space is the community itself
Continue reading “Impressions of Ruby on Rails from an ex J2EE developer (me)”