[MacRuby-devel] How dead is dead...

Kevin Walzer kw at codebykevin.com
Tue Apr 29 07:23:21 PDT 2014

On 4/29/14, 10:01 AM, Patrick Hanevold wrote:
> OK, lets do a poll then, the target audience is right here I would guess.
> What's your preferred flavour of mailing list / group manager for the
> cocoa gem?
> Patrick

Any way to expand the focus here?

A "Ruby-Mac" list (focusing on using Ruby in general for app development 
on the Mac) would bring in devs from non-Cocoa frameworks. My model here 
is the Python-Mac SIG list, which includes PyObjC, wxPython, 
Python-Tkinter, PyQt and others.

One reason I found MacRuby so frustrating to work with (and hence of 
little interest) was that it wasn't really Ruby. A lot of Ruby gems 
wouldn't build, you couldn't use it with other UI toolkits, and its app 
deployment tools could not be abstracted.

One benefit of a "Ruby-Mac" list (as opposed to MacRuby) is that it 
allow developers from various frameworks to exchange ideas, and perhaps 
the community could evolve that would develop some best practices that 
can be used in both a Cocoa and non-Cocoa context.

One immediate example is "rb2app." I'm developing a prototype tool that 
will allow me to deploy Ruby-Tk apps in a standalone manner. Right now 
it's a stub launcher written in C, a custom build of Ruby in MacPorts, 
and a shell script to run install_name_tool. It would be great if this 
could be generalized into a more useful package that can handle 
Ruby-Cocoa apps, and others.

I'm not an expert in Ruby...still learning the language...but I like 
what I see in the language, its libraries, and community, and definitely 
want to dive in and do some real app development in it.

While the tool exist for Ruby desktop app development on the Mac, there 
is a real poverty of deployment tools. There are two or three different 
such tools on Ruby for Windows but they are non-portable. By my count 
there are at least three actively maintained deployment tools for Python 
(py2app, cx_freeze, and pyinstaller). It's baffling to me why no such 
tool has been developed for Ruby on the Mac.

The Python-Mac list supports all kinds of discussion: PyObjC, other GUI 
toolkits with Mac-specific quirks, general Python questions that may be 
specific to the Mac, and deployment questions.

It would be great if this list could be similarly expanded. Cocoa would 
perhaps be its main focus because most of the developers are interested 
in that. But there should be room for others also. JRuby could also find 
a home here as well.



Kevin Walzer
Code by Kevin/Mobile Code by Kevin

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