Ruby on Rails

Ruby on Rails

First things first. ‘Ruby’ is a scripting language, just like JavaScript. ‘Rails’ is an open-source popular web application framework. Ruby on Rails therefore means using the scripting language Ruby with the application framework Rails.

Ruby is an object oriented scripting language developed by Yukihiro Matsumoto in Japan. According to Matsumoto, the creator, Ruby was influenced by Perl, Smalltalk, Eiffel, ADA, BASIC, and Lisp. He wanted to design a language for increasing programmer productivity but with the idea that programming should be fun. The syntax of Ruby is very simple; it emphasizes the necessity for software to be understood by humans first and computers second.  The language became popular in Japan and then gradually spread throughout the world around 2000. From that point on Ruby has grown in popularity, especially as a web application development framework when combined with Rails. As of September 2021, the latest stable of ruby is 3.0.2

Ruby is a general-purpose scripting language that has a friendly, natural language like syntax and doesn’t require colossally extra punctuation. As compared to a programming language like Java, Ruby is sleek and does not necessitate extensive codes to create basic structures such as data fields. Moreover, Ruby eases the task of using high-level abstractions such as meta-programming. Ruby is flexible, and being an interpreted language means that it is portable. Once an application has been developed in Ruby it will run equally well on Ruby supported platforms such as Linux, UNIX, Windows and Mac OS X.

An important feature of Ruby is its block support. A block is part of the Ruby method syntax. Like methods in other functions, Ruby Blocks are a way of binding functions to environments. This construct takes a parameter and returns a value. Blocks can be passed as optional arguments to methods and can be defined using parentheses or keywords. Yield is a Ruby keyword used inside methods for calling a block. Calling a block runs the code inside that block. Yield can pass any number of arguments to the block, and the block’s return value becomes the return value for yield.

Here is a summary of the important features of Ruby:

High-level – developer-friendly, with strong abstraction and use of natural or human language constructs;
Dynamic – data types are determined at the stage of program execution. This increases the speed of development;
Interpreted – Ruby code is processed by the interpreter at the time of execution without preliminary compilation. This provides platform independence and reduces the size of executable programs.
Block and Yield functionality – makes program flow easier to control than other languages

Ruby on Rails
Ruby on Rails (RoR), or Rails, as it is fondly called by Ruby enthusiasts, is an open-source web application framework that uses Ruby, HTML, CSS, and JavaScript to create a web application that runs on a web server. Rails uses the model-view-controller (MVC) pattern and provides a full-stack of libraries from the database all the way to the view. The first version of Rails was released in August 2004. As of September 2021, the latest stable version is 6.1.4

There are also many web development shops that specialize in Rails, plus a substantial independent consultants, trainers, and contractors that develop everything from an elegant and sophisticated online store to complex applications that require mathematical operations. Some of the complex applications that can be developed using Ruby on Rails include stock market platforms with real-time data analysis, and for developing critical, elaborate SAAS (Software as a Service) solutions. Ruby developers find job opportunities in India, U.S.A, UK, Canada, Australia and many other countries.

Ruby on rails is rated as one of the most popular combinations and present great career opportunities. There are many reasons why it is popular – Ruby and Rails is open source, available under the liberal MIT licence. Of course, there are many other scripting languages (like JavaScript for example) that are open source, but in addition to being free, Ruby on Rails scores because it is coder-friendly, and has an succinct but simple to understand syntax. By making full use of the flexibility of the underlying Ruby language, Rails effectively creates a domain-specific language for writing web applications. As a result, many common web programming tasks—such as generating HTML, making data models, and routing URLs—are easy with Rails, and the resulting application code is concise and readable. It is also open to adaption; Ruby on Rails was one of the first frameworks to assimilate and implement the REST architectural style for structuring web applications. It absorbed Merb, a model–view–controller web framework so that so that Rails now benefits from Merb’s modular design, stable API, and improved performance. There is a thriving Rails community that believes in synergy, and Ruby on Rails is one of the most active, user friendly and feature-rich frameworks that coders appreciate.

Rails is designed on the basic MVC architecture. MVC or Modal View Controller is a software design pattern for developing web applications. MVC detaches the application logic from the user interface layer and assists the severance of concerns. The controller is the centre that receives the requests for the application and then performs with Modal to generate the required results which are then in turn displayed by View.


Another reason why ruby on Rails is so popular as a coding language is because of the vast library it has in the form of RubyGems.

To make programmers job easier, Ruby leverages a wide set of third-party libraries, just like other languages. Nearly all of these libraries are released in the form of a gem, a packaged library or application that can be installed with a tool called RubyGems. RubyGems is a Ruby packaging system designed to facilitate the creation, sharing and installation of libraries, targeted primarily at Ruby software. Ruby comes with RubyGems by default since version 1.9, previous Ruby versions require RubyGems to be installed manually.

Ruby Koans, a testing-based program that runs through a variety of Ruby concepts in a trial and error fashion, is another important feature of Ruby.

To summarize, Ruby and Ruby on Rails is a coder friendly combination that has fast grown in popularity. It is used by big companies, and the demand for Ruby coders is growing.  However, for a thorough understanding of the language and for ‘hands-on’ experience, it is recommended to learn Ruby from a reputed training institute.