I’m feeling like crustaceans don’t care about Ruby any more based on my recent Ruby stories submitted. Hell, even Matz tweeted a link to this post - but very little attention here. What’s with that?
I think that Ruby is generally waning. The smaller regional conferences are disappearing (MountainWest, KRW, Ruby on Ales, Ruby Midwest, Ancient City…), the Google searches are dropping, the StackOverflow tag is dropping, a number of the most prominent Rails/big gem contributors have partially or wholly moved off to other languages. I haven’t made time to play with the RubyGems data, but I expect downloads to be flat or declining and new gems/releases to be declining.
My best guess is that it’s because Ruby’s popularity is mostly driven by Rails, and Rails didn’t have a great story integrating the big increase in frontend complexity that started with the wave of libraries like Angular in 2009-2010. A lesser factor is that a lot of the attributes that make Ruby so fun for small scripts and quick for prototypes are anti-features for large, long-lived codebases, so folks are rewriting rather than maintaining. Or maybe it’s just a fad that’s fading; programmers are certainly not immune to marketing.
I think the hype cycle is over for Ruby/Rails. The early adopters who shaped some of the popular projects have moved on because it’s more fun for them to trailblaze in a new community than it is to maintain things in a more-mature community. There’s still a hell of a lot of active rubyists, but maybe they’re no longer present here as much as they used to be.
I appreciate your thoughtful response with links and data :) Interpretation is debatable, e.g. I think npm is a cesspool of microlibraries that don’t indicate healthy library development activity.
I do wonder if I should continue posting Ruby links given little positive reinforcement that people care about them.
I like that Lobsters has a lot of niche-interest stories. I’m a little sad to see Ruby returning to niche status, but that doesn’t mean these things are off-topic or not worth discussing.
I can think of a couple of reasons:
Thanks for your reasoned response. If I’m being completely honest, this is likely a knee jerk from my own post being overlooked which I’m over-sensitive about since I just barely started writing again.