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Aplus Language   25 Sep 04
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A+ is a descendant of APL (AplLanguage) and a predecessor of K (KayLanguage). Arthur Whitney developed A+ in the late ‘80s in response to employer Morgan Stanley’s need to move their APL applications from mainframes to Sun workstations. He later left Morgan Stanley and wrote K.

A+ is open source. link

[ANN] Net::SSH 0.0.2   25 Sep 04
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Net::SSH is an implementation of the SSH2 protocol in Ruby.

Version 0.0.2 brings the implementation to full compliance with the SSH2 protocol, since you can now use ssh-dss key types.

The most significant new feature is a limited implementation of the SFTP protocol. Only a subset of the features of SFTP are implemented, namely directory enumeration, and getting and storing files. More features are coming.

The SSH protocol itself is asynchronous, so the "core" implementation of the SFTP protocol (Net::SSH::SFTP::Session) is also asynchronous. However, a synchronous version (useful when you don’t need multiple channels open simultaneously) is also available (Net::SSH::SFTP::Simple).

Until Ruby 1.8.2 is released, you need to also install the patched version of the OpenSSL module for Ruby (also available from the Net::SSH site). Ruby 1.8.2 will include the patched version of OpenSSL, though, so once you have installed you’ll need nothing else to run Net::SSH.

Why Parrot Matters   25 Sep 04
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(Source: Manny Swedberg; ruby-talk-ML) The Parrot team’s firm intention is to have Parrot run Python and Ruby just as well as Perl6. This is helped(?) by the fact that the plans for Perl6 are so feature-rich (not to say -bloated ;) that supporting everything in it basically means supporting everything in Ruby. Things that are in Ruby, but not Perl6, like continuations are slatted to be added to Parrot anyways out of sheer good-neighborliness. It should, in fact, be possible to compile any dynamic scripting language into Parrot code: scheme, integer basic, befunge…whatever.

Because Perl6 is so far away, support for Ruby and Python is probably actually going to come first. A big test, the first major public showing of Parrot, is going to come at this year’s O’Reilly convention. Python/Parrot is going head to head benchmarking with CPython. The loser gets a pie in the face; watch for it.

Parrot matters. To scripting-language hackers generally, to Ruby hackers specifically, and to the Open Source movement as a whole.

Parrot promises to furnish a fast, portable environment for every major scripting language. This will remove one of the big obstacles to more widespread deployment: speed. Moreover, if I download a Parrot VM to run someone’s PyGame program on my machine, I already have what I need to run your Ruby or Perl program without further dependency worries: viral portability. Fast Ruby means more Ruby hackers. Fast Python and Perl means more hackers in those languages and thus more people who might take a look at Ruby; a common runtime would make the transition even easier.

For OSS as a whole, Parrot promises a rival to Java or .Net without corporate ownership, developed as open source, for languages that are open source and in which tons of open source code is already written. As the Gnome project considers a new development language, a timely Parrot implementation could mean an in for Python, maybe even Ruby. That would be awesome.

Parrot is a respectable ways along. Not by any means done, but more than vaporware. Support for objects was recently added.

Parrot page

Parrot frontend

History lesson: PRINT I -- The First Load-and-Go System   25 Sep 04
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Thanks to Stefan for forwarding me the link. I like the Java-bashing.
 This vignette is primarily about an interpretive program I created for IBM
 in 1956. In one of those "lessons lost" it has a lot to do with today's
 JAVA language, 40 years later.

 How? Well, JAVA is an interpreter, too. A form of language processor that
 was supposed to have been obsoleted by compilers like FORTRAN and COBOL.

 I had found, as the JAVA people did, that interpreters were slow, slow!
 And I created a preprocessor to modify the source so that every decision
 that would be made exactly the same would be made once and for all at
 the beginning, in the source program as modified. Hello, JIT compilers!

Product Pricing Primer   25 Sep 04
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Informative read by Eric Sink.

Second European Ruby Conference   25 Sep 04
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Registration and Infopage

high-resolution version

Brown table strategy   25 Sep 04
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(Source: Dilbert) Today's Dilbert fits in wonderfully with the current outsourcing mania. link

[ANN] Firefox Ruby sidebar   25 Sep 04
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James Britt did hack sth. most useful :-).

Daniel Beger saw the Python version

 > I came across this nifty looking sidebar for Python documentation at
 >  Is there something
 > similar for Ruby?  If not, does someone need a project? :)

And here is the ruby version

It’s really cool!

Rails - the secret killer app for Ruby?   25 Sep 04
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I am pretty sick of killer apps and the discussions about them, but make sure you checkout Rails.

Rails is an open source web-application framework for Ruby. It ships with an answer for every letter in MVC: Action Pack for the Controller and View, Active Record for the Model.

Everything needed to build real-world applications in less lines of code than other frameworks spend setting up their XML configuration files. Like Basecamp, which was launched after 4 KLOCs and two months of developement by a single programmer.

Enjoy the Show, dont tell! 10 minute setup video (22MB).

Have fun with Ruby .. says a tired Armin right now coding simple cgi-stuff without any frameworks :-)

Nutch - a free search engine   25 Sep 04
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Right from the faq:

Why does the world need Nutch, when search engines are free? Search engines are free to use like television is free to watch, but, like television programming, search results are subject to manipulation by the interests that control them. The only way one can be certain that search results are unbiased is if the technology which computes them is public. Nutch seeks to make high-quality search technology freely available.

How can a non-profit afford to run a search engine?

Nutch is primarily a software project, not a service. Large scale deployments of Nutch will probably be run by commerical interests separate from Nutch, funded by advertising or somesuch. If the Nutch software is good enough, perhaps existing major search engines will use it in place of their current closed source code.

The Nutch project itself may choose to host small-scale demo system, so that folks can see that it really works. This will require only moderate funding. The Nutch project may never host a full-scale deployment for folks to use as their everyday search engine. We’ll leave that to commercial ventures that can afford it.

Will Nutch ever be as good as other search engines?

We hope it will be better. With developers and researchers from around the world helping out, we hope to be able to surpass the quality of what any single company can do.



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