Week Five at The Iron Yard
August 5, 2015
This week was pivotal. Not in a breakthrough of understanding kind of way. My learning has been more gradual and smooth than I expected and there hasn’t been a particular day that something clicked. But this week was close.
Rails is Magic
This week we learned just how powerful Rails is. From the little things is does that you don’t have to think about to the huge things is does with ease. Chris usually walks us through the “old” or manual way of doing things first. This is great for me because I don’t like using things if I don’t know how they work. It’s also good for debugging if something goes wrong.
Rails shows it’s open source nature through a lot of these little features. You can tell that somebody repeatedly had to do an annoying or tedious task and fixed it themselves, eventually pulling it into core Rails. Which, to me, is the beauty of open source. Especially after hearing the ways developers used to do things that seem so simple now. Did you know that linking objects with parent objects hasn’t always been as simple as `belongs_to :object`? What a nightmare. It’s great that I get to benefit from these features, but I certainly hope I get to be a part of more additions in the future. More than that, I almost feel obligated to give back in some way. But in more of a respect-for-the-craft than a gun-to-your-head kind of way.
Rails is Love
I don’t have enough experience across the spectrum of languages and building styles to say for sure what I like the best, but I think I love Rails. It might be the one. I’m a tinkerer. I like to play with stuff. Get my hands dirty. Break stuff. Create something cool and never use it again, just for the fun of the project. Rails is perfect for that kind of thing. Both in it’s simplicity and built in generating tools. Proof of concept? Done. One off app for testing? Done. MVP? Easy.
Every proper app, regardless of tools used, will need a lot of TLC to become great. I’m not saying for a second that we should all use Rails to throw together a crappy little web app and call it a day. It can be used in so many ways it would be a shame not to push its limits. However, I really enjoy getting to play with it in new ways and discover things I didn’t know.
I’m starting to think about my demo day project. We’re going to start working on them and less than a month and I want to have mine picked out soon. That’ll give me time to learn extra skills that I’ll need for my app that I don’t think we’ll cover in class. I have a few ideas, some more ambitious than others. The next couple weeks will be about figuring out what will be possible.
I can be found complaining on twitter (@CalebOnesimus) and posting selfies on Instagram (@CalebOnesimus).