What is Ruby on Rails?

Ruby on RailsOne of the most popular Web programming frameworks is a flexible and elegant software library called Ruby on Rails. It’s based on the Ruby programming language, which is also popular due to its use in the Rails framework. Ruby on Rails is often referred to as a framework, and while this description is essentially true, the more accurate term for Rails is software library. Developers can install the RubyGems package manager, which is a software installer that works over a network connection in the same way that most Linux package managers work.

Model-View-Controller Architecture

Rails is similar to other Web frameworks in that it uses the model-view-controller, or MVC, design pattern, which consists of three separate layers of source code that work together. The model layer refers to the code related to the database file that stores all the data that a website uses to populate its pages. For example, files such as forum posts, blog posts and user comments are stored in a SQL database and queried when a user clicks a link or somehow navigates to a Web page. The controller layer contains the source code that searches the database for the data to display, and the view layer contains the source code that defines the look and feel of the website.

In this way, Rails is essentially the same as other Web programming frameworks such as Django and Laravel, although it’s perhaps more similar to Django than to Laravel, because of its concise syntax and abstraction of commonly used routines. Rails is a popular framework for developing sophisticated Web apps, but it’s not the most popular one. The Ruby programming language is usually ranked in the top ten most popular programming languages behind other popular languages such as Python, PHP and Java. One of the main benefits of designing software with Rails is its emphasis on convention over configuration, or COC.

The Benefits of Using Ruby on Rails

The COC design paradigm is meant to encourage developers to use coding conventions under all circumstances rather than spend time coming up with new ways to write software. It saves time and simplifies Rails applications so that many developers can work together on apps without wasting time on unimportant details. Another benefit of using Rails is the RubyGems package manager, which allows developers to easily install useful Ruby packages to use in their own apps. The Rails developer community uploads RubyGems packages, also simply called Gems, so that anyone can freely download and use pre-written source code in their apps, rather than rewriting code components that already exist.

Some of the most well-known websites on the Internet have been written with Ruby on Rails, according to The Coder Factory. Perhaps the most well-known example is Twitter, and other high-profile examples include Groupon, CrunchBase and Shopify. Building basic Web apps in Rails is fairly simple, and all that is needed is a basic understanding of MVC architecture, some experience with SQL programming and a little practice with the Ruby programming language. Some people refer to Rails as a full-stack framework, which simply means that it doesn’t depend on external components.

Related Resource: Django

Web programming is one of the fastest-growing industries these days, and knowing a little about MVC software architecture is a big advantage. If you love computers and software, consider building apps with the Ruby on Rails development framework.