In 2023 I very nearly walked away from Ruby. But after time to think and reflect, I arrived at a plan to make working on Bridgetown “fun” again. Now a new day dawns, and the ecosystem is poised to enter the next stage of this journey.

TL;DR: Bridgetown 2.0 is now under active development! We have a new Community discussion site (you’re here!), based on Lemmy! Stay tuned for additional announcements coming soon of what’s next for the ecosystem! And now, on with the post…

  • @tommasongr
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    3 days ago

    I may came late to this, but to be honest I’m really concerned about the direction outlined in the post. Maybe it’s because I don’t live in the US but I don’t actually care about the politics that motivated the decision, from both sides. Instead I do care about the technology itself. Unfortunately, I haven’t read a single line that explains me why the removal of Turbo, Stimulus, and Active Support will benefit the project in the long term. Besides of course the freedom from other party decisions (is this even fully and truly achievable in our industry?).

    Are you actually sure this is the right move for Bridgetown? I always saw it as the perfect marketing website framework for Rails developers. I’m not sure the project can attract many other folks other than them. Removing Rails technologies just makes it harder for end-users to learn and use the framework. At least in my opinion.

    I wish nothing but the best for the future of Bridgetown but on a personal note let me say that looking at this from the outside is really annoying and discouraging to see politically motivated decisions fought with other politically motivated decisions. Especially in a space and on a subject that has nothing to benefit from it. Maybe this is not the best way to move things forward…

    • Jared WhiteOPM
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      13 days ago

      Thank you for writing in with your concerns.

      First, I want to assure you that Bridgetown 2.0 development progress is proceeding at a pretty rapid clip at this point, so I’m very excited about how the release is shaping up. I don’t see the upgrade having much disruption on existing projects…many of my own projects are now running on HEAD. So if anything, this set of decision-making has actually accelerated the forward momentum of the framework, not slowed it down.

      I want to address Bridgetown being a “marketing website framework for Rails developers”. That’s actually never been a goal of the framework: Bridgetown has been both a static-site generator and fullstack framework for some time now, and we’re going to lean hard into hybrid deployment opportunities where it’s a complete solution.

      Perhaps the most relevant point though, and I regret if my article didn’t make this obvious, is that it’s likely I would not be working on the framework any longer if these core vision steps weren’t taken. There are many other frameworks I take a particular interest in these days, most notably Astro as a worthy competitor to Bridgetown. I choose to continue wanting to work on Bridgetown and Ruby in general because of the community around the language…which at this point is fundamentally at odds with what I see coming out of the top leadership of the Rails ecosystem. You’re welcome to disagree with that perspective.

      At the end of the day, although I make a very modest sum from some generous contributors on GitHub sponsors, Bridgetown is truly a labor of love. Our revised vision for the future of the framework ensures that I will continue to provide this labor for a long time to come, to the best of my ability. I hope you’ll be able to support that.

      Thanks -J

  • @geekosupremo
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    23 months ago

    Large changes are never easy. Large changes that affect the deep parts of a project are no small thing. It sounds like the core team is in alignment and have a fairly clear path forward. Which is kinda the best outcome, clear out cruft and discard things you don’t want to keep, while building out the thing you always wanted.

  • @fpsvogel
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    3 months ago

    👏

    Really great work. I don’t think you should feel bad about having slowed down for a few months. You needed time to process all that’s happened and mull over a way forward, so I’d say it was time well spent.

    Also, as unpleasant as the recent drama has been, it’s forcing a clearer separation between Ruby and Rails, which might be a good thing for Ruby. The community is split in two, but on one side at least projects that are outside the orbit of Rails will have a better chance at having a platform and being heard. That’s my hope, anyway.

    • Jared WhiteOPM
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      23 months ago

      I appreciate hearing that Felipe. I agree taking time off can be very helpful as well as therapeutic, but it’s hard to keep the guilty feelings at bay when it’s stuff other folks are depending on.

      At any rate, yes, it’ll be interesting to see how the Ruby community evolves from here…some days it feels like a niche within an niche, but that can be a good breeding ground for innovation too.

  • svoop
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    23 months ago

    Honestly, it’s the community of people like you who make me love my work with Ruby! As far as my experience goes, fun (as a superclass of developer happiness :-) is absolutely essential and it’s great to hear you’re plotting a plan to make it fun again. My personal shining example is Hanami 2: First alpha out in 2019 it took nearly five years to get to the current, still not fully finished state. A long wait, but necessary it seems in retrospect: It’s alternatives like Bridgetown, Hanami etc which pave the way to a tangible future, where Ruby is no longer considered synonymous with Rails – WIP, but already worth a big thank you!

    • Jared WhiteOPM
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      13 months ago

      where Ruby is no longer considered synonymous with Rails

      Thanks svoop! I think that’s a noble goal as well… not that we lack appreciation for all that Rails has done historically to push the Ruby language forward, but clearly a language with only one popular framework is never going to grow past that well-trodden niche.