Ruby Screenshot of the Week #7
By Tor Norbye on Mar 28, 2007
Since I cheated last week, I'll make up for it by posting several screenshots this week.
First: The continuous builds on deadlock.nbextras.org are back up and running. One of the things you'll find there is a Ruby-only slimmed down version of NetBeans. This might be attractive for those of you who are used to editing Ruby and think of IDEs as overkill. The download is not tiny, but that's because it includes a full installation of JRuby as well as Ruby On Rails and all its supporting libraries. Perhaps we can create a configuration which doesn't JRuby and Rails, since the tool is also perfectly happy to use any existing installations of Ruby and Rails you might point it at.
The configuration is experimental, so menu items etc. might not always be ordered correctly. But if you're a Ruby-only programmer, you'll find it less crowded than the full-featured IDE, and a faster download.
I've tried to improve the Rails support lately, since I've gotten lots of feedback from developers using NetBeans+Ruby with Rails.
Rails projects now have a "Rake Target" action, which is a pull right menu. The pull right shows, hierarchically, all the rake targets available for the project. The target descriptions, if any, are shown as tooltips. Recently executed targets are listed before the hierarchical list of available targets. (Determining the set of targets for the UI is expensive, so it is not kept up to date automatically. There is therefore an explicit user action for refreshing the list when you have edited your Rakefiles or have installed software which adds available targets.)
Database migrations are supported in a similar way. There is a "Migrate Database" context menu (as you can see above). It's a pull right menu which lets you choose either to migrate to the current version, or a specific version (the IDE lists versions that it finds in the migrations directory). You can also "run" any of your migrations files (Shift-F6), and this will run the corresponding migrations target with the version number of the migrations file.
Rails supports lots of additional code generators, performing tasks from generating login pages to localizations and sparklines. The Generator action is now fully aware of generator plugins. They show up in the generator drop down, and usage information is displayed for all generators right there, inlined in the generator dialog. In addition, there is an action for quickly installing more code generators in the Gem Manager.
I just integrated support for running the Mongrel web server, which is popular with many Rails developers. All you need to do now is install Mongrel via the Gem Manager and run your application.
Finally, it's been a few weeks since I added it, but it's useful enough to point out in case you missed it: There is a command for jumping from actions to views and back (Ctrl-Shift-View). It's in the Go To context menu as well.