It's official: I like Ruby

By Tom Moertel
Posted on
Tags:

Recently, I decided to spend some quality time with Ruby. Two weeks of coding later, I’m a happy man. Ruby is fun.

Did you hear that? Ruby is fun. It made my list of Legitimately Fun Programming Languages and, if I am being honest, even edged out Perl:

Haskell

Ruby

Perl

(Haskell is still tops, but you knew that, right?)

Languages that don’t thrill me anymore include C, C++, C#, and Java. Sorry guys, you’re tedious. Hell, you don’t even listen to me. When I assign a string to a variable, why do you make me tell you again that the variable is a string? Couldn’t you figure that out for yourselves? It’s like the left hand side doesn’t know what the right hand side is doing! Yeeeesh!

Anyhoo, Ruby doesn’t make me repeat myself. Ruby also supports many of my favorite functional programming idioms. For instance, the inject method, available on all Enumerable objects, is actually my functional friend foldl:

foldl ( \x y -> ... ) z list   -- Haskell
list.inject(z) { |x,y| ... }   #  Ruby

And Ruby has lambda, callcc, and the strangely wonderful binding. (But sadly no tail-call optimization.) Meta-programming is well supported and seems to be fairly commonplace in Ruby culture. I like that.

If you haven’t tried Ruby, what’s holding you back? Give it a test drive. You never know, you might actually have fun.

comments powered by Disqus