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We are so spoiled

Alright, one of the biggest things holding me back from trying Ruby in a large scale is the lack, or perceived lack, of a full fledged IDE that comes close to the experience I get with VS.Net/ReSharper (I’m gonna play with the Ruby support in NetBeans soon).  I simply don’t want to code in anything without Intellisense, code navigation, background compilation, and automated refactoring.  I won’t use Visual Studio without ReSharper, period.  I am spoiled.

One of my colleagues at my client was telling stories today of programming in the military by physically plugging wires into the correct slots.  Bet that was fun to debug.  I think I’m going to spend the rest of the day being happy with my tools.

About Jeremy Miller

Jeremy is the Chief Software Architect at Dovetail Software, the coolest ISV in Austin. Jeremy began his IT career writing "Shadow IT" applications to automate his engineering documentation, then wandered into software development because it looked like more fun. Jeremy is the author of the open source StructureMap tool for Dependency Injection with .Net, StoryTeller for supercharged acceptance testing in .Net, and one of the principal developers behind FubuMVC. Jeremy's thoughts on all things software can be found at The Shade Tree Developer at http://codebetter.com/jeremymiller.
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  • http://www.sapphiresteel.com Huw Collingbourne

    Hello Jeremy. What are the ‘not so great’ things you’ve heard about Ruby In Steel? We are determined that Ruby In Steel shall be the best IDE for Ruby In Rails so if anyone has any criticisms we would sincerely like to know about them. In version 1.1 we have worked towards providing first class IntelliSense for Ruby and the fastest Ruby debugger available (plus all the editing, project management etc.. that you’d expect). We also have Rails support which is, to the best of my knowledge, as good as any other IDE’s Rails support (including fast debugging). We are now working on much better Rails support for Ruby In Steel 1.2 (due later this summer). This will include huge improvements to Rails IntelliSense and a visual Rails design workbench (I know of no other IDE that has anything comparable).

    We also have a free edition though this lacks IntelliSense, the ultra-fast debugger (it does have a Ruby-speed debugger though) and won’t have the visual Rails tools.

    Which edition have you heard criticised? The free one or the commercial Developer release? I honestly and truly would encourage you to let us know of any criticisms of Ruby In Steel. I believe our customers will confirm that we are very responsive to criticism and we actively encourage users to let us know when the software does not provide the features they require.

    best wishes


  • John

    My dad told me when he first started working with computers for Texas Instruments in the 60s. They worked on their programs and then fly on a charter plane once a week down to Texas A&M to run them since that’s where the computer was. After a year of that, TI got their own computer and they only had to go to another building.

  • http://iancooper.spaces.live.com/ Ian Cooper

    Due to the popularity of TextMate on the mac I see some folks recommending e: http://www.e-texteditor.com/ I’m told a lot of people use RadRails: http://www.radrails.org/download_rails_rdt.php

  • Greg

    I am happy with anything …

    Not so long ago I worked in embedded systems; our actually test on the device loop involved building the image (3-5 min)… walk back to engineering, grab an eprom, pull the image off the network, burn to eprom, open machine, change eprom.

    Needless to say in such a situation you become good at what we called “philosophical debugging”. As for dbugging support we could hook up a VT terminal (the same ones we wrote all of our code on) and it culd print messages or dump an area of memory.

    Jeeze for me vi in a xterm and gdb made me spoiled after this.

  • http://www.stevetrefethen.com/blog Steve Trefethen

    FWIW, CodeGear has a Ruby IDE based on JBuilder/Eclipse that’s now in public beta.


  • http://dotnet.org.za/armand Armand du Plessis

    I also initially thought I’d miss Visual Studio but now quite happy with Textmate when doing Ruby work.
    Visual Studio is a great IDE but my attention span is very short and every pause or freeze is an excuse to switch to email or blogs. I find that working with a lighter weight editor a great way to stay focused.

  • http://codebetter.com/blogs/jeremy.miller Jeremy D. Miller

    I’ve got a (licensed) copy of IntelliJ, but I couldn’t get the Ruby plugin to be recognized and didn’t really try very hard.

    I’ve heard not so great things about Ruby in Steel, which is really too bad since VS is basically home.

    My next try is NetBeans. The guy doing the Ruby work seems to be cranking features out.

  • karl

    according to JetBrain’s website IDEA does support Ruby, but from what I’m reading, it isn’t the best.

  • karl

    I use aptana (formally rad rails). it sucks. they are supposedly adding a bunch of core features shortly.

    Why don’t the fine people @ JetBrains do something?

  • Koen
  • Steve


    Have you tried this ?

    (Most developers I know who have used Eclipse do not like Visual Studio near as much.)

  • http://lazycoder.com Scott

    Have you tried writing Ruby and Rails code using NetBeans 6.0? I have it installed at work, but I haven’t been able to write any Ruby code yet.



  • http://www.webgambit.com Karthik

    Dude we’re beyond spoiled with Visual Studio. When I was doing Java I don’t remember Eclipse or WSAD being half as good with the intellisense.

  • http://www.sirmike.org SirMike

    We’re so spoiled – that’s true.
    I realized that when had to write some code without IDE. I also realized that I don’t know the language and my compiler. Charles Petzold article about “Visual Studio that rottens mind” was very accurate.

    Some time ago I was looking for good C++ IDE in Linux – I couldn’t find one so I started using good editor with compiler and own scripts. It’s much more effective than veeeery slow Visual Studio.

  • Brian

    Not saying it is good enough, but you might want to check out Komodo http://www.activestate.com/.

    Another option is to use your existing IDE (VS) and use a good plug in like Ruby in Steel. http://www.sapphiresteel.com/

    My co-worker and I have been talking about this very same thing. We just started learning ROR about a month ago. We are finding that we don’t need all the IDE magic when working with it. We intially thought we did…but we are finding we just might be wrong about it. I use TextMate on the Mac, which isn’t as great/big as Visual Studio, but it is kind of refreshing to work with.

  • Dave Bettin

    Have tried out Ruby in Steel [1]? It costs a little bit of coin but it works well.


    [1] – http://www.sapphiresteel.com/

  • Eric Schatzschneider

    I completely agree. Without a good IDE, it makes a developers life harder or spoiled. :)