Joey over at Tucows has an article about where all the cool stuff is happening and how it isn’t happening at Microsoft.
For an example he shows a big chunk of XML and big chunk of Java and these three lines of Ruby:
01 class Order < ActiveRecord::Base
02 has_many :items
The jist of the article is that MS sucks, which is always a truism. But being the geek I am, I have to point out the comparison is a little unfair. What he’s actually comparing is some Java frame work for DB to Ruby on Rails, not just Ruby. The magic that lets you write three lines of code is in ActiveRecord.
That’s not to say the XML isn’t stupid and could be fixed with Convention Over Configuration*, which is what RoR does. I used to do WebObjects programming for Apple and the configuration to map database tables would probably look that bad in XML but you never wrote XML because Apple had a tool to do the configuration. I like RoR’s method better.
* I can’t find a definitive explanation of Convention Over Configuration to link to. Mmm….