Ruby on Rails 2.0 released for Web apps

Web framework emphasizes REST Web services

Version 2.0 of Ruby on Rails, the popular open source Web application development framework, was released this morning, said the developer of the framework, David Heinemeier Hansson, on Friday.

Key to this release is its reliance on REST (Representational State Transfer) Web services instead of SOAP Web services. Security enhancements also are featured. Available for download at the Ruby on Rails Web site, the framework leverages the Ruby programming language.

"The big thing we've been pushing in Rails 2.0 is the whole notion of REST and the whole notion of building REST-ful applications," as opposed to using SOAP, Hansson said.

"Rails used to ship with a library that did SOAP Web services. We've yanked that out and put in a bunch of things instead focused on doing REST Web services," he said.

REST is favored over SOAP now because those in the agile development camp feel it has become too complex, with its many WS-* standards to follow, said Hansson. Spoken as "ws star," Hansson instead denigrated the WS-* specifications by referring to them as "ws death star."

Featuring specifications such as WS-Security, WS-* has been championed by companies such as Microsoft. "[These standards] don't really do anything in a simple way, to put it mildly," said Hansson.

"We feel that [SOAP is] overly complicated. It's been taken over by the enterprise people, and when that happens, usually nothing good comes of it," Hansson said.

REST, meanwhile, has been built on the principles of the Web such as HTTP and straight XML, he said.

In the security space, Rails 2.0 makes it easier to protect against phishing, with provisions to guard against CRSF (cross-site request forgery) intrusions. Safeguards against XSF (cross-site forgery) attacks are included as well.

"We tried to make it really easy for people to deal with both of the scenarios," said Hansson.

Also featured in Rails 2.0 is improved testing support and backing for Atom feeds. "We're making it really easy for applications to emit feeds," which is critical to application updates, Hansson said.

Another new feature in version 2.0 is a framework called ActiveResource, which encapsulates Web services and makes them as easy to use as databases, Hansson said. This is similar to the ActiveRecord feature for encapsulating database calls in Rails, he said.

While Hansson, from Denmark, was the original creator of Ruby on Rails, he stressed he is no longer the only cook in the kitchen. "I'm only one out of hundreds of people who work on the framework," he said. He currently is a partner at software development firm 37signals, based in Chicago.

Hansson previously stressed the REST bent of Ruby on Rail 2.0 during the RailsConf 2007 event in Portland this past May.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Paul Krill

Show Comments


James Cook University - Master of Data Science Online Course

Learn more >


Sansai 6-Outlet Power Board + 4-Port USB Charging Station

Learn more >



Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?