New site built using Ruby on Rails

(David Teare) #1

Hi all,

I wanted to introduce you to my latest site, palmsphere.com, which was built using 100%
Ruby. PalmSphere was created to provide an easy-to-use site for users to find and download
applications for their mobile devices, like Palm, Pocket Pc, etc. We were amazed at how easy
RoR made application development and had enough time left over at the end of the project to
implement Ajax in several places to make the user experience more natural and responsive.

Please check out the site and tell us what you think. Any thoughts or comments would be
greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
--Dave.

(Lyndon Samson) #2

Hi all,

I wanted to introduce you to my latest site, palmsphere.com<http://palmsphere.com>,
which
was built using 100%
Ruby.

What no DBMS??? :slight_smile: No javascript?

PalmSphere was created to provide an easy-to-use site for

···

On 8/16/05, David Teare <dteare@tearesolutions.com> wrote:

users to find and download
applications for their mobile devices, like Palm, Pocket Pc, etc. We
were amazed at how easy
RoR made application development and had enough time left over at the
end of the project to
implement Ajax in several places to make the user experience more
natural and responsive.

Please check out the site and tell us what you think. Any thoughts
or comments would be
greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
--Dave.

--
Into RFID? www.rfidnewsupdate.com <http://www.rfidnewsupdate.com> Simple,
fast, news.

(Pawel Szymczykowski) #3

I haven't gotten a chance to look around the major parts of the store
too much, but isn't that an Xbox 360 logo at the top left?

-Pawel

···

On 8/15/05, David Teare <dteare@tearesolutions.com> wrote:

Please check out the site and tell us what you think. Any thoughts
or comments would be
greatly appreciated.

(Luke Duncalfe) #4

Nice one! I particularly like the 'Favourites' idea - seems a very
intelligent way of improving functionality and increasing the chance
visitors will come back (and probably more). Also points to an interesting
possibility for Ajax sites to implement a kind of 'native bookmarking'.

"David Teare" <dteare@tearesolutions.com> wrote in message
news:9160EFEF-2BD0-4AE7-8B96-9B5A11CF7F33@tearesolutions.com...

···

Hi all,

I wanted to introduce you to my latest site, palmsphere.com, which
was built using 100%
Ruby. PalmSphere was created to provide an easy-to-use site for
users to find and download
applications for their mobile devices, like Palm, Pocket Pc, etc. We
were amazed at how easy
RoR made application development and had enough time left over at the
end of the project to
implement Ajax in several places to make the user experience more
natural and responsive.

Please check out the site and tell us what you think. Any thoughts
or comments would be
greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
--Dave.

(Thomas Kirchner) #5

I must admit, I was skeptical when I first read the email... "oh boy,
more free marketing for someone's project" :slight_smile:

I'm quite impressed with the site though. Everything flows well
together, the AJAX fits well without being too trendy or flashy, and it's
a site I can see myself going back to, were I interested in the subject.
Good work!
Tom

···

* On Aug 16 8:27, David Teare (ruby-talk@ruby-lang.org) wrote:

Please check out the site and tell us what you think. Any thoughts or
comments would be greatly appreciated.

(Balwinder S "bsd" Dheeman) #6

Nice site! You forget to provide link http://www.palmsphere.com/ site.

BTW, I was unable to find and, or search any categories like software based on OS, Applications, Games, Utilities and, or Tools.

Anyway, thanks for bringing up a nice site.

···

On 08/16/2005 04:57 AM, David Teare wrote:

Please check out the site and tell us what you think. Any thoughts or comments would be greatly appreciated.

--
Dr Balwinder Singh Dheeman Registered Linux User: #229709
CLLO (Chief Linux Learning Officer) Machines: #168573, 170593, 259192
Anu's Linux@HOME Distros: Ubuntu, Fedora, Knoppix
More: http://anu.homelinux.net/~bsd/ Visit: http://counter.li.org/

(dave) #7

nice work!

···

--

here are more things in heaven and earth,

horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.

(Aníbal) #8

How did you deployed the app? What's the system configuration?

(David Teare) #9

lol! Ya, we used those too :slight_smile:

What I was trying to do was play off the "100% Pure Java" marketing ploy. You see, I've been a
100% Java guy for the last 7 years, but after learning ruby I don't want to use Java anymore.

I think Ruby should have a "100% Pure Ruby" icon that people can place on their sites so
we can help market this great language.

--Dave.

···

On 15-Aug-05, at 7:30 PM, Lyndon Samson wrote:

What no DBMS??? :slight_smile: No javascript?

(David Teare) #10

I agree it's similar but honestly we didn't steal it. I had already fallen in
love with the independently created logo when my wife said "Hey, doesn't
that look like an XBox?". We decided that it was different enough that
the probability of being sued by MS was remote.

OT - You wouldn't believe how hard it is to have a logo created that
everyone can agree upon. Here I thought J2EE was hard, but it
is simple compared to logo design :slight_smile:

--Dave.

···

On 15-Aug-05, at 7:33 PM, Pawel Szymczykowski wrote:

but isn't that an Xbox 360 logo at the top left?

(David Teare) #11

Thanks for the feedback. The favorites were one of the most fun pieces to
implement. Normally in a project I'm so busy with O/R mappings, configuring
frameworks, etc, that I never have time to look at the UI. Thanks to RoR,
we had time to look at Ajax, XHTML standards, etc.

BTW - if you want to implement something like the favorites, you need
to follow this Ajax pattern if you want the ability to mark favorites without
forcing members to login: http://www.ajaxpatterns.org/Lazy_Registration

--Dave.

···

On 15-Aug-05, at 8:41 PM, luke wrote:

Nice one! I particularly like the 'Favourites' idea - seems a very
intelligent way of improving functionality and increasing the chance
visitors will come back (and probably more). Also points to an interesting
possibility for Ajax sites to implement a kind of 'native bookmarking'.

"David Teare" <dteare@tearesolutions.com> wrote in message
news:9160EFEF-2BD0-4AE7-8B96-9B5A11CF7F33@tearesolutions.com...

Hi all,

I wanted to introduce you to my latest site, palmsphere.com, which
was built using 100%
Ruby. PalmSphere was created to provide an easy-to-use site for
users to find and download
applications for their mobile devices, like Palm, Pocket Pc, etc. We
were amazed at how easy
RoR made application development and had enough time left over at the
end of the project to
implement Ajax in several places to make the user experience more
natural and responsive.

Please check out the site and tell us what you think. Any thoughts
or comments would be
greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
--Dave.

(David Teare) #12

Thanks Tom for those kind words. We tried very hard not to fall into the
trap of "Everything Ajax". Ajax should, IMHO, only be used to make the
site easier to use, not for any core functionality. For the most part, the
majority of PalmSphere will still work if JavaScript is disabled (we still have
work to do in this area...).

Re: free marketing - I agree that sometimes mailing lists are abused to get
marketing, but over at the RoR list I see new product announcements
frequently. It is a nice way of letting people know RoR is being used in
"real" applications. I felt the Ruby list would like to know too :slight_smile:

--Dave.

···

On 15-Aug-05, at 9:29 PM, Thomas Kirchner wrote:

* On Aug 16 8:27, David Teare (ruby-talk@ruby-lang.org) wrote:

Please check out the site and tell us what you think. Any thoughts or
comments would be greatly appreciated.

I must admit, I was skeptical when I first read the email... "oh boy,
more free marketing for someone's project" :slight_smile:

I'm quite impressed with the site though. Everything flows well
together, the AJAX fits well without being too trendy or flashy, and it's
a site I can see myself going back to, were I interested in the subject.
Good work!
Tom

(David Teare) #13

We decided not to use categories at all for looking up products because, IMHO, they
don't help you find what you want. Instead, we went with the Google approach and
relied on search. This seemed to work well for google, so we thought we'd give it
a shot. We're waiting for more user feedback to decide if we made the right choice.

The one place we will have categories is for platform / OS. If you own a Palm, I'm sure
you wouldn't want Pocket PC applications in you results. We plan on adding this
in the coming weeks.

Thanks!
--Dave.

···

On 15-Aug-05, at 10:46 PM, Dr Balwinder Singh Dheeman wrote:

On 08/16/2005 04:57 AM, David Teare wrote:

Please check out the site and tell us what you think. Any thoughts or comments would be greatly appreciated.

Nice site! You forget to provide link http://www.palmsphere.com/ site.

BTW, I was unable to find and, or search any categories like software based on OS, Applications, Games, Utilities and, or Tools.

Anyway, thanks for bringing up a nice site.

--
Dr Balwinder Singh Dheeman Registered Linux User: #229709
CLLO (Chief Linux Learning Officer) Machines: #168573, 170593, 259192
Anu's Linux@HOME Distros: Ubuntu, Fedora, Knoppix
More: http://anu.homelinux.net/~bsd/ Visit: http://counter.li.org/

(David Teare) #14

We deployed the app on Lighttpd using fast CGI. The system is a root box hosted by 1&1 - from what I recall the memory is 2GB, and the processor is 2.4GHz (or maybe 3).

I am amazed at how fast ruby is at processing the requests. I come from a J2EE background where the mantra was "CGI is slow", and so I was amazed when I see ruby processing requests FASTER than a comparable J2EE setup!

--Dave.

···

On 17-Aug-05, at 1:11 PM, anibalrojas@gmail.com wrote:

How did you deployed the app? What's the system configuration?

(Kirk Haines) #15

Tangent proximity alert!

Okay. Ajax. In general, I agree that Ajax is best used as an accent.
However, one of the opportunities that Ajax provides is the ability to write
web applications that will run on a standard browser, but which act more like
desktop applications. One of my clients is a construction company that has
to schedule work crews and employees on a bunch of projects every week.
Doing this on paper is a hassle, but with a Ajax powered Ruby web app, it's
fast and easy. Select a project and an employee, and a box comes up to enter
start time and scheduled hours. Enter those, and it pops up in the schedule
grid. Click on a box in the grid, and a form opens up to enter the
information for that guy/project/day. Edit or delete the information, and
the changes go out to the grid.

Ajax lets the application work faster because the amount of data moving back
and forth between the client and the server is limited to actual state
changes for most of the life of the user's session.

So, there are times and places where extensive use of Ajax is just the thing
to make the project work and the client smile.

Kirk Haines

···

On Tuesday 16 August 2005 7:33 am, David Teare wrote:

Thanks Tom for those kind words. We tried very hard not to fall into
the
trap of "Everything Ajax". Ajax should, IMHO, only be used to make the
site easier to use, not for any core functionality. For the most
part, the
majority of PalmSphere will still work if JavaScript is disabled (we
still have
work to do in this area...).

(Kirk Haines) #16

Oh, I agree! When I see .0035 second response times from a single processor
midrange linux box for 9k pages with modest dynamic content (and no content
caching), I am pleased. This is also under lighttpd with a fastcgi transport
layer. Ruby makes me smile. When I implement a caching dispatcher,
cacheable pages will become blazingly fast. At least in this sphere of work,
as I said last week, Ruby is plenty fast.

Kirk Haines

···

On Thursday 18 August 2005 6:40 am, David Teare wrote:

I am amazed at how fast ruby is at processing the requests. I come
from a J2EE background where the mantra was "CGI is slow", and so I
was amazed when I see ruby processing requests FASTER than a
comparable J2EE setup!

(Scott Ellsworth) #17

In article <200508160803.19612.khaines@enigo.com>,

One of my clients is a construction company that has
to schedule work crews and employees on a bunch of projects every week.
Doing this on paper is a hassle, but with a Ajax powered Ruby web app, it's
fast and easy. Select a project and an employee, and a box comes up to enter
start time and scheduled hours. Enter those, and it pops up in the schedule
grid. Click on a box in the grid, and a form opens up to enter the
information for that guy/project/day. Edit or delete the information, and
the changes go out to the grid.

This sounds really keen. Two questions:

Is the representation of Rails and AJAX at
<http://www.onlamp.com/pub/a/onlamp/2005/06/09/rails_ajax.html> fair?
It seems amazingly straightforward to do, which always pushes my doubt
buttons.

Is the above URL the best place to start when trying to learn how to use
AJAX with Rails?

(I have a budget app I have been meaning to write that needs a similar
grid structure.)

Scott

···

Kirk Haines <khaines@enigo.com> wrote:

--
Scott Ellsworth
scott@alodar.nospam.com
Java and database consulting for the life sciences

(David Teare) #18

While I agree sometimes a full-blown Ajax solution is needed, one of the problems I have with
relying on JavaScript too much is (AFAIK) your site cannot be indexed by google very well. Given
that palmsphere.com relies heavily on traffic from the major search engines, we really had no choice
but to minimize the use of Ajax and use it only as "icing".

Any ideas on how to have a full-blown Ajax site that is "googlable" ?

--Dave.

···

On 16-Aug-05, at 10:03 AM, Kirk Haines wrote:

On Tuesday 16 August 2005 7:33 am, David Teare wrote:

Thanks Tom for those kind words. We tried very hard not to fall into
the
trap of "Everything Ajax". Ajax should, IMHO, only be used to make the
site easier to use, not for any core functionality. For the most
part, the
majority of PalmSphere will still work if JavaScript is disabled (we
still have
work to do in this area...).

Tangent proximity alert!

Okay. Ajax. In general, I agree that Ajax is best used as an accent.
However, one of the opportunities that Ajax provides is the ability to write
web applications that will run on a standard browser, but which act more like
desktop applications. One of my clients is a construction company that has
to schedule work crews and employees on a bunch of projects every week.
Doing this on paper is a hassle, but with a Ajax powered Ruby web app, it's
fast and easy. Select a project and an employee, and a box comes up to enter
start time and scheduled hours. Enter those, and it pops up in the schedule
grid. Click on a box in the grid, and a form opens up to enter the
information for that guy/project/day. Edit or delete the information, and
the changes go out to the grid.

Ajax lets the application work faster because the amount of data moving back
and forth between the client and the server is limited to actual state
changes for most of the life of the user's session.

So, there are times and places where extensive use of Ajax is just the thing
to make the project work and the client smile.

Kirk Haines

(Kirk Haines) #19

> Doing this on paper is a hassle, but with a Ajax powered Ruby web app,
> it's fast and easy. Select a project and an employee, and a box comes up
> to enter start time and scheduled hours. Enter those, and it pops up in
> the schedule grid. Click on a box in the grid, and a form opens up to
> enter the information for that guy/project/day. Edit or delete the
> information, and the changes go out to the grid.

This sounds really keen. Two questions:

Is the representation of Rails and AJAX at
<http://www.onlamp.com/pub/a/onlamp/2005/06/09/rails_ajax.html> fair?
It seems amazingly straightforward to do, which always pushes my doubt
buttons.

I really have no idea as I'm not a Rails user. It is really the rest of what
you want to do with the data and the rest of the DOM manipulations to get the
effects that you want that are the hard part. Throwing data back and forth
with xmlhttprequest and some supporting library is the easy part.

Is the above URL the best place to start when trying to learn how to use
AJAX with Rails?

Again, I have no idea on this. For Rails, there is a mailing list as well as
the #rubyonrails channel on freenode.net.

(I have a budget app I have been meaning to write that needs a similar
grid structure.)

As I said, the ajax parts shouldn't be hard. Much trickier are issues like
inserting new rows into the table or keeping track of which grid element you
are editing data for so that you can make sure your updates go back to the
right places. Once you get that ironed out, though, the rest of it should
come together easily.

Kirk Haines

···

On Tuesday 16 August 2005 6:14 pm, Scott Ellsworth wrote:

(Kirk Haines) #20

I think it probably just boils down to making sure that the google spider can
get to any of the pages you want it to be able to reach without having to
execute any JS. I wonder if one could embed a set of links into a page that
are essentially there exclusively for spiders to find? i.e. in your JS
heavy, AJAX heavy page, they are completely hidden from a normal user's view,
but to a spider walking the page content, they see them?

Kirk Haines

···

On Thursday 18 August 2005 6:44 am, David Teare wrote:

Any ideas on how to have a full-blown Ajax site that is "googlable" ?