What Kinds of Projects Work Best With Ruby on Rails Development?

Get Your Project Back On Rails

Despite speculation that Ruby on Rails is declining, it’s actually very much alive and being used to develop many of today’s most popular and robust platforms. This flexible framework is at the heart of such popular online services like Shopify, Groupon, and Kickstarter. 

While software engineers — such as those at BairesDev — who use it may encounter certain challenges, Ruby on Rails development also provides many benefits. Here we discuss the pros and cons of using Ruby on Rails for software development, as well as the kinds of projects that are ideally suited for creation using Ruby on Rails. 

Ruby on Rails Development
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What Is Ruby on Rails?

Ruby has been a consistently popular general-purpose programming language since it was developed in the mid-90s. Rails is a software library that extends the Ruby language. Together, Ruby on Rails is a back-end or server-side web application framework. It combines Ruby with JavaScript, HTML, and CSS to develop web applications. 

Software engineers appreciate Ruby on Rails because it’s useful for building products through the minimum viable product (MVP) approach. Here are a few other advantages of Ruby on Rails development that justify why RoR is used by popular services like Airbnb, GitHub, Hulu, and Basecamp:

  • Provides protection against popular web application attacks.
  • Includes a modular design and plugins for maximum flexibility.
  • Consistent structure and coding practices.
  • Largely self-documenting, making it easy for engineers to work on projects in progress.
  • Engineers can create automated tests of code snippets. 
  • Reduces development time and, therefore, costs to create software.
  • Active developer community.

Developers considering using Ruby on Rails should consider the following disadvantages as well:

  • Some web hosts don’t support Rails.
  • Limited availability of engineers (since other languages like Java and PHP are more widely used).
  • Rails applications are slower than those built with Java or C.

Ruby on Rails can be used within virtually all industries for a wide variety of projects, including those listed here. 

Customer Relationship Management Applications (CRM)

If you want to build a bespoke customer relationship management (CRM) application, Ruby on Rails is a good platform choice for several reasons. You can build (or have built) a CRM application cost-effectively, given that Ruby on Rails is well-known and can be efficient during and after development, even when team members come and go. 

Ruby on Rails development is also useful in building a CRM application because its versatility enables you to add unique functionality, such as a sophisticated behavior tracking component, based on how you prefer to interact with your customers. Engineers can use the libraries and other tools to easily build such custom features. Furthermore, it can help you add more custom features later on. 

Software-as-a-Service

Software-as-a-Service projects must be built to run on any system, and Ruby on Rails offers a good foundation for that software style. Basecamp is an example of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) created using Ruby on Rails. This popular work tool enables teams to manage projects, communicate, and store files to stay organized and efficient. It’s especially useful for dispersed teams. 

For any given project, the service includes a message board to post updates and gather feedback without having to use email, a to-do list to assign work and see status updates, a project schedule that shows important milestones and deadlines, and a “campfire” that functions like a chat room. Each project can have specific people assigned to it. 

Additionally, because it uses the ActiveRecord object-relational mapping (ORM) to describe every database request, Ruby on Rails can be used to create functionality to develop granular reports, spreadsheets, graphs, and other database requests. 

Because of this flexibility, you can experiment with various modules to determine which ones work best for your business model. 

Open-Source Repository

One of the most well-known Ruby on Rails projects is GitHub, a highly-popular developers’ hub, with millions of users. The site is a community where software engineers can submit and receive responses to questions they have about their development projects. It uses a database that monitors and connects background data. 

eCommerce

Ruby on Rails development can be used to construct the components needed for a robust e-commerce platform, including a strong database. Etsy is an example of an e-commerce platform built with Ruby on Rails. Etsy, which features millions of merchants and users, connects individual sellers of primarily handmade products with people who want to buy those items. 

Like any good e-commerce site, it enables sellers to upload photos and descriptions, provide shipping, and take payments. It allows buyers to browse, search, explore “related items,” create a shopping cart, and post reviews. 

Social Media

With Ruby on Rails, you can create social media sites like Goodreads. This platform is somewhat like Facebook for bookworms, where users can review books they’ve read, see and comment on reviews from others, and create a “to-read” list. The site includes other functionality as well, like reading goals and integration with Amazon’s Kindle software. 

Twitter, a massively popular social media site that allows users to post brief messages and respond to others’ comments, was also created using a combination of Ruby on Rails and jQuery, though it was later rewritten using Scala. 

Streaming Media

Hulu, later rewritten, was originally developed using Ruby on Rails, which is still used on the platform’s back end to provide uninterrupted functionality. Hulu is a media streaming platform that allows users to watch TV shows and movies on demand. While not as popular as Netflix or Amazon Prime Video, Hulu does support millions of active subscribers in the U.S. 

Online Marketplace

Airbnb is one of the most famous examples of a successful application created using Ruby on Rails development. The concept behind it is connecting travelers with “hosts” who have space to rent in their homes. This method provides an alternative to staying in hotels that can be more comfortable and convenient, and less expensive. 

Hundreds of millions of people use the site, which enables hosts to upload photos and descriptions as well as other information that can help travelers feel comfortable staying with them and collect information from travelers to ensure their own comfort as well. The Ruby on Rails framework supports the site’s performance and functionality. 

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