Turn Your Ideas Into Reality Quicker with Ruby on Rails

So as you all know by now – I have a lot of ideas. In fact, it’s not just me, it’s also many of you so I’ll rephrase that, we have a lot of ideas. Of course not every idea is a good one but one of the cardinal rules of being an entrepreneur is not being afraid to try and fail. Of course if it takes you an entire year to try each of your ideas you may have twenty years of failure in your future before you find your first success!

Luckily there’s been an advancement in the web development space that’s been allowing entrepreneurs to try their ideas and build cool interactive software faster than ever before, what I’m talking about here is – Ruby on Rails. Now I know that many of the people who read my blog are not programmers, but you don’t have to be a developer to build cool stuff with Ruby on Rails, you just have to hire someone who knows it.

railsThat being said, if you are a bit of a code geek like me then this could actually change the way you build really awesome software…or better said, software you think is really awesome. More often than not, just like with registering domain names, what sounds cool and amazing to you might not make as much sense to the masses. The good news with Ruby on Rails is that you can often try your idea and get it up and running much quicker, or if you’re hiring a developer both quicker and for a lower cost than ever before.

Whether you are going to be writing code yourself or hiring someone to do it, it’s good to have a basic understanding of what the heck Ruby on Rails is. As someone who is learning this right now I thought it would be fun to share some of the things I’ve learned with all of you, so here are some of the basics:

  • First-off, Ruby is a programming language that’s been around for quite a while
  • Ruby on Rails is an application framework (geek talk for an easy way to do things that are typically hard)
  • Ruby on Rails was introduced to the world in 2004 so it’s not even ten years old yet
  • Ruby on Rails is probably the single easiest way to build database-driven web applications
  • Developers can focus on their ideas rather than on the code since Ruby on Rails is designed to help you get your project out the door with as little code as possible – i.e. more time to think-up cool ideas
  • There are a zillion free places online you can learn Ruby on Rails – my personal favorite that I’m actually going through right now is Rails for Zombies
  • There are a zillion places to hire Ruby on Rails developers online if you’re not a geek like me – I highly recommend EnvyLabs but you can also just do a Google search and go nuts

While most of my time in my own business is spent doing CEO-type things like strategic planning, putting together business plans, forecasts, modeling, hiring people, partnerships, legal, finances, etc. I still like to get my hands dirty and the geek inside me has been wanting to learn more about Ruby on Rails for a while now. With Xelot we currently have three people writing code and I’m one of them, we need all the man-power we can get and I honestly can’t afford to pay three developers to do the level of coding we’re doing – so I’m throwing my hat in the ring on this project.

I’ve hired some great developers in the past and am lucky to have some great developers working on a number of projects that are running right now. If you have a great idea for some really cool software and you want to make it happen you can either learn Ruby on Rails yourself or hire a developer, either way Ruby on Rails is enabling entrepreneurs all over the world to make some amazing software, in record time…and you could be next!

 

{ 3 comments… add one }

  • Jason June 1, 2011, 4:50 pm

    Other frameworks used by the cool kids are Django (Python) and Node.js. With node, I use express/jade for the framework. I did try rails, but all the configuration scripts/files made my brain hurt… šŸ™‚

    Reply
    • Morgan June 1, 2011, 7:20 pm

      @Jason – I thought it was a bit complex myself…then heard about Heroku and it blew my mind. Probably the easiest way I’ve ever seen web apps deployed – really cool. Currently setting it up now so I’ll definitely post an update once it’s up and running.

      I used to write Python when I was at IBM, really great language, almost like writing in executable pseudo code šŸ™‚

      Reply
  • Poor Uncle June 1, 2011, 9:16 pm

    Morgan..looks like you are really cooking this year. Good luck for the remainder of this year.

    Reply

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