Friday, June 28, 2013

Rails productivity

I recently started a project at work where we want to store some business data we don't currently have, and also integrate with the data we do have, without extending any of the myriad hodge-podge of data sources that we pay for. I was drawn by the promise of Ruby on Rails, where one can create a web site with "rails new websitename". Seriously. See the getting started guide. It's very compelling.

Then of course, reality sets in. The first time you have to model out a real solution, there are many-to-many relationships to grapple with, and attendant view complexity like multi-selects, backed by an astounding amount of misinformation about how to get things done. In the end, however, I decided that despite my learning curve, what I got working in the time utilized is pretty amazing. It's not about lines of code per day, because so much can be generated for you. It's about working commits per day. Once you have a set of components that works for you, I suspect it gets considerably easier because you can just replicate.

I'm currently evaluating inetsoft and jaspersoft as visual analysis and integration tools. Hooking up to real databases in SQL server and MySQL shows the limits of both tools. I haven't got either one really humming yet.

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