RubyConf: Rubinius – Hardcore Ruby

This was the second session of RubyConf 2006. I have to be honest, this session went a bit above my head, and from the ‘glaze’ of the audience, it went above a few of the other attendants. Well, it wasn’t so much that it went above my head as it had no code and no demo. This was the second session of the day and I still had not had an ‘WTF OMG’ moment but this is of no fault of the speakers.

Rubinius is a really hardcore academic, experimental, proof of concept fork of Ruby. A key question asked by Evan Phoenix, the speaker and Seattle.rb memeber, was why would any sane developer do this? What is wrong with the current implementation? According to Evan, he started the Rubinius implementation because he found it to be fun. He also stated that RubyCLR and JRuby are pushing Ruby in new directions. In Rubinius, Evan, wants to provide a simple architecture, a simple core, a simple implementation. Evan stated that Rubinius is “so simple, it’s almost naive.” Rubinius is a partial port of the Smalltalk implementation provided by the Smalltalk blue book. Evan stated, “Genius stand on the shoulders of giants, not that I am a genius, I am just trying to stand on as many shoulders as possible.”

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