Friday's Software Enlightenment

I'm going to regularly post links, discussions, and tips I've found helpful every Friday.

  • Version 2.3.3 of Ruby On Rails is Released - includes improvements to JSON and a touch command that allows you to update the updated_at timestamp for associated objects
  • Timecop - a really awesome gem that makes it easy to mock time related functions
  • JQuery Rounded Corners - I might be a bit late to the party on this, but rounded corners are so Web 5.0. Seriously, though the browser support for this plugin is impressive. I also like the api.
  • Giles on "Magic" Frameworks - I hear from a lot of programmers outside of the Rails community that it does too much "magic." Giles' thoughts are extremely poignant. I look at it this way: you drive a car every day. You put gas in it, get oil changes, etc. I don't know everything there is to know about what's under the hood, and chances are, neither do you. You have common interfaces with the automobile and all the smaller details have already been manufactured and put in place for you. A framework is definitely similar. Would a mechanic tell you that you cars run on "magic"? If you don't understand something, that doesn't make it magic.
  • Huddle's Thoughts on Bootstrapping the development of a web app - Although I have to disagree on the usage of Elance, Guru, or design contests, there's some good tips here. I've rescued many projects for clients that attempted to use inexpensive resources like those found on Elance. There is a similar lapse in quality when you run design contests. Credible and reliable help in building your application is the best investment you can make for your online property.