Ruby on Rails won’t make it in 2007?

Yakov Fain wrote his 2007 predictions. First and foremost, Yakov happens to be a Java and Flex expert, therefore we can expect a certain bias and an enterprise mindset. A bias is acceptable, but he clearly misses the mark on a few points. Predicting the future of IT is not an easy task given that there are so many emerging technologies popping up, but he ventured in this direction, so we might as well take a look at his most controversial statements.

He writes:
“Ruby and Ruby on Rails won’t make it in 2007 either. I still do not see a compelling reason to switch.”
And then:
“Ajax hype is stronger than I thought mainly because of the life support offered by frameworks like GWT. But still, I’m not going to recommend enterprise IT shops make any serious investments in AJAX.”

Wow! Where do I start? The world is changing, lead by the Internet evolution, which is lead itself by innovative technologies that enable developers to be more productive and users to be protagonists. It’s a survival of the fittest for businesses and technologies. So what exactly did shake the web development industry in 2006? Wasn’t it precisely Ruby on Rails and Ajax? The claim that “Ruby on Rails won’t make it in 2007 either” is ridiculous because Rails did make it in 2006 and many Java and PHP developers considered it worth switching to – and they couldn’t be happier! It was, along with Ajax, the most adopted innovation in 2006, within the web application development arena. There is no reason to believe that it will suddenly stop being adopted in 2007. Ajax and Rails mattered in 2006 and will continue to do so. While I agree with Yakov on the possible relevance of Adobe Flex and Microsoft WPF/E for RIA in 2007, dismissing Rails and Ajax is pure nonsense. Even Sun aknowledges the importance of Ruby, Rails and Ajax, and it’s trying to be part of this success at all costs.

I’m afraid Pete Lacey wrote pieces like They can’t hear you having Yakov and most of his supporters in mind. (By the way Pete, I’ll share a secret: some of us can hear you.)

I’ll conclude with a very simple prediction of my own.

In 2007 we will have an exponential increase in the trend that we’ve seen in the past few years, with the adoption of frameworks and technologies that will continue enabling us to quickly and simply produce web applications as we never thought before. REST, Ruby, JRuby, Ruby on Rails, Ajax, Django, RelaxNG, Atom – to name but a few – are here to stay and will shape our future and define our limits.

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