From the Dev Couch: All Ruby Baby

by Dan DeMeyere - @dandemeyere

Rubyflow is a great Ruby blog aggregator. I subscribe to their RSS feed and every day there are multiple posts that either pique my interest or are relevant to gems or technology that I work with. I don't have time to read all of them everyday so I bookmark all the good ones and set aside a couple of hours every week to parse through them all. Featured in this post are the articles that I learned something from or determined are worth saving for a later date as it could become handy in the right situation.

Realtime Data Overlays Using Google Maps

The Ghostly Map
A couple of months ago the thredUP dev team wandered over to Cloudflare's office in SOMA to celebrate their recent achievements. While we were enjoying a couple of beers, we stumbled across a 10-foot projector screen displaying a realtime geo-mashup of their service in action. My colleagues and I all looked at each other and knew instantly we had to do something similar. While our version is still on our 'fun to-do list', this post on Stac's blog is a good walkthrough about how to make a realtime maps mashup with Rails 3. They cover using Rails' cache store API, use of Backbone.js, Underscore templates, GeoKit, and the Google Maps API. Read more →

Automatic Page Loading

Endless Page Scrolling with Rails 3 and jQuery
This has to be the coolest post I came across. Do you ever wonder how Facebook only displays a certain number of comments or status updates and when you approach the bottom of the container, they automatically add more? Well, this is how you can do it. It's a relatively simple implementation using jQuery to attach a custom handler on an element that makes an AJAX call to your Rails controller to append more data to the element. The only required file is his custom jQuery library, which can be found on GitHub here.

Altering Rails' Naming Conventions

Pluralizations and Singularizations (Inflections) in Rails 3
When I first started learning Rails, I found the naming conventions difficult in routes, controllers, and models. What was plural, what was singular, and what stayed the same - i.e. if the model is history.rb, is the controller histories.rb? In general, Rails is pretty good about getting that kind of stuff right, but if you want to override how they pluralize or singularize anything, then this post will be great for you.

Optimizing MySQL

Tuning MySQL - Innodb, Buffer Pool Sizes, and Rails Stack Server Advice
I'm not going to even pretend I know 10% of what's going on in this post. Even though it's way over my head, I have to imagine every person who works on a MySQL-based app can read this post and have some valuable take-aways. Did you know you can log slow queries by changing performance values in your MySQL my.cnf file? You can even change how many seconds constitutes a long query for your app. On top of that, you can log queries that aren't using indexes. Now that's pretty slick. There is also good advice for those using a Rails/Apache/Passenger/MySQL/Memcache stack (which is what we use at thredUP). Read more →

Notable mentions