This month at Austin on Rails is guaranteed to take you on a magical journey. We’ve scheduled two talks that will inspire you; one that will change the way you make friends and another that will make you want to redesign your app. This month’s meeting is organized by Dave Rupert.

How Richard Found Friends - Richard Schneeman

So you’ve got a social web application, and you’ve got users, but you’ve got a problem…your throngs of users could be a tad more social. Your mission is to make your service more useful to your users, by helping them to find friends and stay active.

In this talk we’ll cover some easy ways to help users connect to other users (facebook, twitter, etc.) and explore some graph theory to find likely potential friends on your service. We’ll go over the tools and techniques used on the Gowalla code base to uncover these potential friends, and show you how with a little bit of memcache, and redis you can add this functionality to your own app, too.

Richard Schneeman ( @schneems) hacks ruby for Gowalla, and in his free time teaches Rails classes and drinks beer.

Make Rails Pretty - Adam Michela and Dave Rupert

Ruby is a sexy language, so why does your web app look like you bought it at a thrift store? Adam Michela and Dave Rupert, world-renowned frontend specialists, are here to help. They actually like HTML and CSS and geek out over experimental webkit CSS properties. They’ll walk through the essence of great web design and will try to bridge the gap between the ever-perilous Designer-Developer relationship.

Adam Michela ( @soopa) is an Interface Designer & Developer at Gowalla. He’s been practicing Photoshop Driven Development with Rails since Odeo was in stealth-mode and gets off on things like baseline grids, Sass mixins, and nested views. In other words, he’s a nerd with a penchant for pretty.

Dave Rupert ( @davatron5000) is Lead Developer and 1/3rd of Paravel. He’s also the host of the ATX Web Show, a podcast all about the web design and development community here in Austin, TX.