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CSC 321.01, Class 05: More fun with Rails


  • Preliminaries
    • Notes and news
    • Upcoming work
    • Extra credit
    • Questions
  • Introducing Rails, round 2
  • Introducing Rails, round 3

News / Etc.

  • Today we continue with Rails.
  • Sorry for the delayed reading journal assignments. Stay tuned for more. (Today’s is posted.)
  • We appear to have lots of sick students this a.m.
  • Reminder: Friday is Add/Drop deadline. And yes, that includes music lessons, too.
  • Please submit Dudle poll on mentor session times.

Upcoming Work

Good things to do

Note: I do not do extra credit in two-credit classes.


  • Convo today at 11am in JRC 101.
  • Talk today at 4pm in JRC 101.
  • Former governor Brandstadt tonight at 7pmish in JRC 101.


  • Les Duke Saturday at 9 a.m. at the Golf Course.


  • Math/CS picnic Sept. 15 sign up by noon Sept. 8.


Introducing Rails, round 2

We’ll spend the first ninety minutes or so working on Chapters 1 and 2 of The Rails Tutorial.

Should we do all of our Rails work on Cloud 9?
Should we build a new VM for each project?
It’s up to you. You’ll find that Hartl (today) and SaaSbook have different base VMs, so setting up a new one is good.
Do we have to use Bitbucket rather than Github?
No. You can use Github. Your repo will just be public.
Didn’t you say that Rails was “convention over configuration”. What’s
with this GemFile thingy?
Well, some configuration is necessary, particularly since APIs change so quickly.
Wow, there are a lot of magic incantations
Yup. Doesn’t that seem like a great opportunity for a cracker?


Why did we do both c9 and Heroku? (Why don’t we just run our servers on C9?)
c9 is designed for development; Heroku is for deployment. You should not mix the two.
Development/deployment lets you preview/test changes without affecting your users.
Using different systems lets you keep track of what you’re doing.
The platforms are built for different purposes.
What did you learn about setting up your system to run Rails?
I have to do lots of set up my system to run Rails. (Yes, that’s one of the things that happens as you transition to being a software professional. You no longer get to work with pre-configured systems. Some of you have more experience at this than others; CSC 321/22 should help everyone.)
Minor details have incredible significance.
We rely on lots and lots of libraries (“Gems”). They change. Even minor changes have ripples. So we have to be careful in specifying versions.

Introducing Rails, round 3

We’ll spend the last twenty minutes or so getting started with the “clone and update” first Rails assignment from the SaaSbook.

[Or not]