5 Things You Need to Know About Ruby Development Before Using It for Your Next Project

Jun 09, 2020

Ruby is known as a programming language that makes developers happy. Thanks to the great readability of code, impressive libraries, and supportive community, the Ruby development process is smooth and well-optimized.

Yet not only software engineers are in favor of the Ruby app development. Perfectly suitable both for startups and rapidly scaling businesses, Ruby language is a great choice for e-commerce, web and app development, content management, and a range of other Ruby projects.

To have a better idea of what is Ruby development and why you should choose Ruby language for your next project, we summarized the 5 key points about it. More about them in today’s article on:

Intro: the Story Behind Ruby Language and Why Ruby Development Remains Relevant Today

This year, Ruby language celebrates its 27th anniversary, proving to be one of the most long-lasting programming languages. Officially launched on February 24, 1993, by Yukihiro “Matz” Matsumoto, Ruby language appeared as a blend of Perl, Eiffel, Ada, Smalltalk, and Lisp. Matsumoto aimed to create a language that looks simple and is easy to understand while enabling developers to create complex and scalable projects at the same time.

Well, almost three decades of successful Ruby language growth and expansion prove that these goals have been achieved. Today, Ruby is included in the top 10 of RedMonks’ ranking of the 2020’s leading programming languages. Besides, it was mentioned among the most popular programming, scripting, and markup languages of 2019.

Ruby language is used as the backbone of such world-renowned services such as Shopify, Airbnb, Dribble, Twitch, Bloomberg, SoundCloud, and Zendesk. Launched as startups, some of these products have rapidly grown into powerful platforms with millions of users. They are living proof that Ruby development remains relevant and has extensive capabilities for different kinds of services.

Thing #1. Key Characteristics and Advantages of Ruby Development

Is Ruby front-end or back-end? What are the advantages of Ruby language? When to use it and why? These are some typical questions that everyone who is just entering the world of Ruby development has. Here are the main characteristics of Ruby development that help to understand what makes it so good for Ruby app development and other Ruby projects:

The Simplicity of Ruby Development

The code of a Ruby application looks clear even to people who know nothing about Ruby app development. This programming language has English-like syntax and so easy-to-follow logic that some lines could read like sentences. This allows developers to smoothly join existing Ruby projects, do more with less code, and reduce the volume of documentation. Such a characteristic of Ruby applications also helps project managers to follow Ruby projects and effortlessly find common ground with developers.

Cost-effectiveness

Since Ruby language is open-source and, therefore, free to use, it’s a great option for companies on a budget. Besides, there are tons of open-source Ruby libraries with typical features and free tools that facilitate Ruby app development. At the same time, Ruby applications and solutions are easily scalable, which means that a basic app launched as a startup can be scaled to a powerful Ruby application coping with thousands of user requests.

Optimized Ruby Development Process

Ruby on Rails, which is one of the most popular Ruby web application frameworks, cuts development time by 25-50%. Sometimes, one line of RoR code substitutes six lines of code written in Java. Moreover, you can utilize integrated testing that scans the code while it’s still being written instead of using third-party testing tools that take additional time and investment. Lean code base, a wealth of ready-to-use plugins, the object-orientation of Ruby language are some other factors that significantly speed up Ruby development.

Supportive Ruby Community and Culture

The Ruby community is truly famous for its wholehearted support and close connections. Ruby developers willingly share their knowledge, provide best practices, and help each other. There are also numerous conferences, events, meetups, including RubyConf, RubyKaigi, and RailsConf. These advantages of the Ruby community benefit both developers who get a chance to grow professionally and companies that outsource app development. The latter enjoy a better quality of the designed product and reduced cost of custom application development services thanks to optimized Ruby app development.

Thing #2. What Can You Do with Ruby Language? Ruby App Development and Other Uses

Ruby is an open-source programming language mainly used for back-end applications. Although you can build a CMS with Ruby on Rails as well as any other project that doesn’t require quick and massive calculations, Ruby development remains the top choice for custom application development services. But why is Ruby a great choice to build apps?

The thing is that applications are often launched by startups that are just entering the market and seek maximum flexibility. They have a limited budget and must deploy the application as soon as possible just to stay afloat. Such companies cannot afford to spend years on a super-complex backend – a quick but reliable prototype and an MVP is what they need.

This explains the popularity of Ruby language, and Ruby on Rails in particular, for in-house and outsource app development. Writing less code to complete more tasks, optimization, and ease-of-use are the cornerstones of Ruby app development. Besides, software engineers can conveniently update the Ruby application with new features or make changes to its code even after the launch. This makes Ruby app development a perfect option for projects that rapidly scale and grow.

Another convincing reason to use Ruby language for apps is the versatility of ready-made, tried, and tested solutions. Developers aren’t forced to waste time reinventing the wheel since many popular features are open-source and offered for free.

Even though Ruby app development is a popular choice for budding companies, the advantages of Ruby development also attract medium and large enterprises. Apart from applications, they use it for other projects connected to e-commerce, custom databases, and content management. Ruby language can do almost anything unless it involves really heavy computations.

Thing #3. Ruby on Rails Is the Most Popular Framework for Ruby Projects and Ruby Web Development

Ruby on Rails and Ruby language are often used interchangeably. This Ruby web application framework is truly famous.

Released in 2004 by David Heinemeier Hansson, Ruby on Rails (ROR) is an open-source web application framework written in Ruby language. It’s offered under the MIT license, which means almost unlimited reuse and license compatibility. This also means that an app development company can access the high-quality Ruby web development framework for free.

Here’re some other crucial facts about Ruby on Rails you should know:

  • ROR is based on the model–view–controller (MVC) software design pattern.
  • ROR relies on several primary principles: Convention Over Configuration (CoC) and Don’t Repeat Yourself (DRY). The CoC principle aims to reduce the number of decisions a software engineer needs to make without sacrificing flexibility. The DRY principle states that any repetitive information within a system must be minimized to avoid redundancy. Both approaches significantly speed up the Ruby development process and enable developers to focus on more complex tasks instead of routine actions.
  • ROR allows developers to fine-tune the data model after the Ruby application launch. Besides, this framework is very stable and predictable, which makes it highly suitable for long-term Ruby projects.
  • ROR projects are usually divided into smaller sprints based on the Agile development methodology.

Simply put, Ruby on Rails is a mature technology with a super-active and vibrant community open for cooperation and discussion. The comfort of developers and the simplified Ruby web development process are the foundation of this framework. Definitely consider choosing it if that’s what you value.

Thing #4. Ruby vs. Python vs. PHP

Ruby development is often compared to PHP and Python because of their similar uses. Still, there are some characteristics that differentiate these languages and make Ruby development unique. When it comes to the choice between Ruby vs. Python or Ruby vs. PHP, you should remember that it’s not about the capabilities. In many cases, these languages can work for the same solutions. It’s about how well one language or another suits your team and the selected software development approach.

RUBY PYTHON PHP
ABOUT Ruby language has a variety of ready-made open-source solutions and libraries which effectively speed up and simplify Ruby development. It has a strong community but is more difficult to master than Python. There are also fewer qualified Ruby developers than Python or PHP experts. Python is a top choice for beginners and the classics of software engineering. Despite being quite simple, its code is less elegant than Ruby. Python has a broad academic community that contributes to its development. PHP provides great consistency and uniform variable syntax. Since it has inbuilt functions, there is no need to upload libraries like in Ruby language. At the same time, PHP is less powerful than versatile and flexible Ruby.
AREA Time-sensitive web development and functional programming Academic and scientific programming. Data-heavy websites and servers with lots of traffic. Web development and dynamic web pages
TOP FRAMEWORK Ruby on Rails Django Laravel
PRODUCTS Github, Airbnb, Shopify, Bloomberg, SoundCloud Uber, Spotify, Netflix, Instagram, YouTube Wikipedia, Udemy, Facebook

To decide which language meets your needs best, you can consult with an app development company that will analyze your needs. They will also advise you on Ruby outsourcing options if you prefer remote software development. The right choice should always balance your business and technical capabilities.

Thing #5. Top Projects Developed with Ruby Language as One of the Core Technologies

Now, let’s judge the Ruby language by its deeds. A bunch of world-renowned products we use every day perfectly demonstrates how multi-functional and efficient it is. Here are some key solutions developed with the use of Ruby:

GitHub Codesharing, educational, and software development platform
Dribble Self-promotion platform for designers and other creative folks
SoundCloud Music sharing and distribution platform
500px Online platform for amateur and professional photographers
Airbnb Lodging platform connecting tourists and homeowners who want to rent their place out
Twitter Social media service for microblogging and networking with 321 million active users
Shopify E-commerce solution for retailers that simplifies online store design and management
Basecamp Real-time communication and collaboration tool for teams
Fiverr Marketplace for freelancers and businesses
Goodreads Online catalog with tons of books, authors, and reviews
Netflix Subscription-based streaming service with popular TV shows, movies, and more
Kickstarter Funding platform that features creative projects helping them raise funds

How Leobit’s Custom Application Development Services Provide Ruby Outsourcing

Leobit’s technology stack has a strong focus on Ruby development as one of the core programming languages. We hire experienced software engineers skilled to work with top Ruby frameworks, including Ruby on Rails. Our team has completed numerous Ruby outsourcing projects for different industries and fields.

A shopping e-commerce platform and a legal marketplace are great examples of how Ruby outsourcing can help to build steadily growing and popular products. For the e-commerce marketing solution, Leobit designed iOS and Android shopping apps based on Ruby on Rails capabilities and a functional website. Today, this Ruby outsourcing project has over 1 million active users and 5+ million app downloads. The legal services marketplace also achieved great results with over 20,000+ registered users throughout the US. For more case studies, visit our Projects page or get in touch with us should you have any additional questions.

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