O'Reilly's first Rails book premieres in beta form

O’Reilly has launched their Rough Cuts series with Ruby on Rails: Up and running as one of the first titles leading the charge. Rough Cuts is O’Reilly’s version of Beta Books or Early Access and gives you access to the content while it’s still being written.

Ruby on Rails: Up and running is written by Bruce Tate and Curt Hibbs. The final book is expected in May. Also of note for Railers on Rough Cut is Ruby Cookbook by Leonard Richardson and Lucas Carlson. That one is expected done in September. Not to be confused with the Rails Recipes by Chad Fowler (featuring recipes and secrets from the 37signals dome) that’ll be out in February.

So that marks four books currently available in final or beta form that focuses exclusively or partly on Rails: Agile Web Development with Rails (the original bible), Rapid Web Development mit Ruby on Rails, Ruby on Rails: Up and running, and Ruby Cookbook. That’s quite an achievement already!

And coming soon will be Chad Fowler’s Rails Recipes and David A. Black’s Ruby for Rails, which will bring us to a total of six books. And I believe there’s at least a good handful of additional books in the works. Rails is certainly on track to be the best documented web framework for the dynamic languages. Rock on.

Rails and the book both finalists for Jolt Awards

The Jolt Awards have been honoring products of excellence and high productivity for 15 years and this year both Rails 1.0 and Agile Web Development with Rails made the cut as finalists!

The announcement tells us that the book competes against such titles as Practical Common Lisp, Service-Oriented Architecture, and Wicked Cool Java. Rails 1.0 is going up against JBoss 4x, Coldfusion, and Zend Studio. Pretty exciting stuff. Hopefully we’ll be jolting in red shortly.

Rake 0.7.0 has been released

Rake 0.7.0 has taken a great leap forward with the addition of parallel execution tasks and namespaces. Upcoming releases of Rails will surely use namespaces, so please do familiarize yourself with them today. And many thanks to Jim Weirich for his continued stellar work on this.

Caching models with memcached

The Robot Co-op has released their memcache-client and a plugin for Active Record that uses it. This enables you to cache your models in the distributed memory cache and not hit your database for repeat visits all the time. They use this to power 43things and the rest of their social suite.

SwitchTower with Bazaar-NG

Damien Merenne has just announced a Bazaar-NG SCM module for SwitchTower. All you bzr users now have one less reason to not use SwitchTower.

Damien has given permission for this module to be included in the next SwitchTower release, too. If you’ve got a pet SCM that you’d like to see supported by SwitchTower, just take a look at Damien’s code to see how little it really takes to implement a new SCM module. Then, implement it and submit it as a patch to http://dev.rubyonrails.org/newticket.