This month’s meeting is organized by Ethan Waldo. We’ve got a couple of great talks for you this month…one of building iPhone apps that talk to Rails and the other on exploring (and explaining) the mysteries of Bundler. Building iPhone apps is about the hottest thing since sliced bread and Bundler is a key piece to the Ruby dependency management puzzle in this day and age. Come out and join us to learn something new, meet great people, and who knows…maybe even drink a beverage after.

Build an iPhone app with a Rails server - Rich Boldway & Andrew Duhan

Until recently iPhone development was solely done in Objective-C, but now robust apps can be built for Apple’s mobile safari browser. User experience can be propelled by integrating the iPhone’s resources such as notification, location service and the contact manager with the PhoneGap Javascript-extension Objective-C framework.

Since Apple will only approve iTune apps that the look and feel can not be changed from download, the view Javascript/HTML/CSS has to be served client-side. This required us to overcome security restrictions with Cross-Origin Resource Sharing (CORS). We will be showing how we implemented this on both the Rails server and the iPhone.

Subsequently, these iPhone views are Javascript-built client-side with JSON data from the Rails server. We used the popular Javascript/css library, jQtouch to built these div-based views. JQtouch manages navigation history that easily breaks. We will show how we overcame jQtouch and will discuss alternatives to jQtouch.

Richard started Rails in December 2005 and has developed Rails app in insurance, medical, tourism, language translation and isp industries. Being both a recovering Java programmer and home-sick Smalltalk programmer he specially likes writing less code and having more fun doing it.

Andrew is a software developer, audio engineer, and tinkerer who recently came to Rails from a traditional LAMP background. He loves clear and understandable user interfaces and the question “…but will it suck for the user?”

Bundler: The Easy, The Hard, and the NP-Complete - Chris Continanza

Bundler manages an application’s dependencies through its entire life across many machines systematically and repeatably. This library, written by carlhuda, has become a requirement of Rails 3 to manage gem dependencies and is has rapidly become standard for gem management in the Ruby world. In other words, if you’re doing Ruby work you’re going to be using the Bundler.

This talk’s goal is to educate you not only how to use the Bundler, but on how and why it works. We’re going to take a look at the easy stuff: using Bundler to manage your gems via a Gemfile. Then we’re going to take a look at the hard stuff: what Bundler is doing to your beloved ruby environment to fight the system (gems). Lastly, we’ll take a look at the NP complete stuff: the resolver algorithm, which is a real-world example of a constraint satisfaction problem being solved with depth-first search and backtracking.

Chris is a Ruby hacker who enjoys making things, especially software and music. As a student his research was in teaching Computer Science with Lego Robotics and in generating melody lines using Ruby’s midi library and mathematical chaos. Chris has been using Ruby and Rails since he discovered them after struggling with J2EE and is currently employed as a rails developer.

Bonus Info

For some extra Rails fun on 10/26, check out a special HacksHackerATX meetup just before our meeting. We will be beginning our meeting at 7:30 instead of the normal 7:00 to help accommodate members who may want to catch Jacqui’s remarks.

Here are the pertinent details:

5:30-7:30 PM Jacqui Maher, NYT Rails dev/sw engineer/journalist Texas Tribune 823 Congress Ave, 2nd floor

Volunteers Needed!

You can help Austin on Rails next year by taking responsibility for planning the talks (or other activities) for one or more of our meetings. Damon needs your help to keep Austin on Rails sustainable.

Please ping @damon and add yourself to the 2011 schedule to take ownership of a monthly meeting. You will plan the meeting and emcee the meeting. He will assist as needed.

Rails Connections

You can connect with Austin On Rails members on a few different networks:

Members App
LinkedIn Working With Rails

Meeting Time and Location

We meet at Datran/OtherInbox (enter through the stairs of the Omni Building at 7th and Brazos and head up the elevators to the 8th floor) from 7-9PM (7:30-9:30 this month) on Fourth Tuesday. Socialization practice follows after the meeting at B.D. Riley’s on 6th.