Running Hot

November 22nd 16:38
by why

Yes-s-s, Zed takes me on! Here’s a good part:

Zed Shaw: Why actually blessed me with his presence during one of my hacking sessions and made me feel smarter by association. I showed him Ragel (which he used to write Hpricot), and showed him some vim tricks, and he talked to Obie. It was great just having him warming the air near me.

My coils tend to run VERY HOT. And I fart a lot.

He makes a very sore point about Shoes “taking that wonderfully stable Ruby interpreter his friend Matz wrote to the edges of all that is possible in computing.”

Ouch, that smarts. And it’s totally true. I’ve had a rough time getting Ruby 1.8 to work out. I don’t really have any defense. I don’t see Shoes as this incredible answer to everything. It’s a bit hokey and it’s a bit trite.

Alex Fenton: I admire Shoes but it’s not the best choice for much desktop application programming. It’s not going to “open up a new world”… naming Shoes a ‘toy’ is not a slur; play is important in life. It’s an influential experiment.

I agree with this! It’s a toy, it’s for fun and I trust that nobody takes it very seriously.

Learning Ragel and Lemon at the feet of Zed Shaw was a classic time, for sure.
Tell me more about this passive aggressive thing, though. Do I have to have a deep hidden agenda, a long-standing personal beef or an ulterior motive in order to simply call a guy Hannah Montana?

Now begin the comments …



said on November 22nd 11:39

Yes. Stop having fun, dammit.

Antonio Cangiano

said on November 22nd 13:15

why, I had the chance to read the manual and play with Shoes and I find it a work of genius. Perhaps it’s a toy, maybe it’s not a revolutionary piece in the history of computing, but it’s an extremely well conceived DSL for simple, cross-platform desktop applications. In other words it’s good at doing what it’s supposed to do and it’s fun and easy to use. As such, it’s a welcomed addition to the Ruby world. I wish “more serious” toolkits were so well designed and straightforward. Keep doing what you are doing. The Ruby community needs code and inspiring projects, more than endless discussions on who said what.


said on November 22nd 14:09

I just wanna say that I like everybody. _why, Zed, Dave Thomas, DHH , Matz, everybody.

Brian LeRoux

said on November 22nd 14:59

I like mustard.

Big Jim

said on November 22nd 15:23

I like pie.


said on November 22nd 15:26

Antonio Cangiano: Don’t call it a work of genius. An image is called an image. An oval is called an oval. It’s just very basic.

Jeem: Dog pile on Jeem!

Big Jim: No, you like tacos.


said on November 22nd 16:37

it’s ulterior, not alterior. but it’s cool, i still like you…


said on November 22nd 16:46

I like salsa.


said on November 22nd 16:47

I’m sorry to post out of context, but I could not find an email address, contact form or anywhere else on the hackety site to post this.

I was going along with the Tutorial Lesson2B and entered the code from the example:

  1. Read the Metafilter feed.
    feed = Web.fetch(“”)
    feed.items().reject!() do |item|
    item.description().length() > 200

The code produced this error.

Pardon: No items method found.

You tried to use the items method on a 0×205eb6c> object. (The object was: #<String)

So I skipped to the next example and entered the code from the example:

  1. Read the Metafilter feed.
    feed = Web.fetch(“”)
    puts feed.items()

And it returned this error message.

Whoops! No items method found.

You tried to use the items method on a 0×1f455dc> object. (The object was: #<String)

I just wanted to let you know. If there is a revised version of this tutorial/example, please let me know as I was enjoying it and learning a lot from the first lesson.

Thank you,



said on November 22nd 17:12

Zed can be explained succinctly by the image found here


said on November 22nd 18:01

vire7: Much obliged.

infil00p: You like salsa.

Krisha: My email is I don’t have an answer for you yet, but send me your email address and I’ll get back to you.

Barefoot Snorkeler

said on November 22nd 18:34

Danno: There isn’t much anonymity with Zed. We know who he is, what he has done, etc… I don’t get why people keep trying to label things… put the label machines down. Zed is Zed. Llamas are llamas. Pickle juice smells like pickles.

Somehow Ruby is like one of those words that means something different depending on who you talk to. Ruby is best experienced not described. All of this sound just shows how much more there is to explore with Ruby. I’m not asking people to like it but please do find a way to enjoy things.


said on November 23rd 00:34

Well pahdners… I’m an old timey Ruby guy, but I haven’t been around much in the last couple of years. It’s a shame to see this whole Ruby thing devolve into the most contentious language community out there… well, maybe except for that parenthesis language.

What happened Ruby kids? I mean, Matz is such a nice guy. And _why’s attitude here is great. But beyond those two and a few others, is there anyone not involved in some sort of bar room brawl these days?

Sheez… you go away for a couple of years and then you take a glance back into the Ruby Room and it’s like a huge food fight or something.


said on November 23rd 08:45

What i love in shoes, is prototyping / experimenting / showing off simple stuff. (And having fun).

For that it even has a place in the land of suits, honestly. That is commendable.

This example was a challenge to do in other available / known tools, mainly because we didn’t want it to take several hours. Shoes did it in something like 15 lines:


Building that in shoes was delightful, as a mainly profit programmer, I wouldn’t get such an opportunity without it. You could even go so far as to say that shoes brought little coloured dots of fun to our slave ground…


said on November 23rd 10:58

bah. who gives a shit.


said on November 23rd 14:10

why not gazelle parser generator


said on November 23rd 16:23

I heard my named mentioned. What’s up boys?


said on November 23rd 21:50


# Read the Metafilter feed.
feed = Web.fetch("", :as => Web::Feed)
feed.items.reject! do |item|
  item.description.length > 200

Note the added second argument for Web.fetch.

A Fan

said on November 24th 02:07

I think Shoes and H’ety H are the most subversive things on the Internet (in a really good way). Try Ruby! inspired me to try programming again for the first time since I was a kid. Hackety Hack & the Poignant Guide helped me learn, and I’m writing my first humble programs in Shoes.

Here’s the thing: in a couple of years, thousands of ordinary people all over the world are going to be learning to program. That is going to be fun.


said on November 24th 14:51

I just wanna say, I find all your stuff freaking amazing. I don’t know if that’s your philosophy, but I see a lot of “shut up and just code” in your things. Never one to be controversial without being productive. Please, never stop to code.

Ash >inf

said on November 24th 15:41

I can’t help but wonder if Shoes hasn’t been an influence on things like MacRuby

Things like:

win = window :frame => [10,20,300,300] # from MacRuby

can really make cocoa programs seem easy and intuitive like Ruby.

It may not be Shoes, but I bet the developers of MacRuby have come across shoes before (although thats really a replacement for the ruby-cocoa bridge).

I can’t wait for more languages and API’s to pick up some of the nicer features of ruby.


said on November 25th 00:04

You can’t just go walking around calling people Hannah this or Montana that. The world doesn’t work that way.

You’ll learn.


said on November 26th 07:10

shoes running hot … …

Ryan Leavengood

said on November 27th 00:56

I remember how things were in the “old days” of Ruby (2001-2003): playing around on ruby-talk when the signal-to-noise was decent, reading RedHanded, just having fun. Before the dark times, before the rise of the Railspire (hehe.)

Now while it is nice being able to make money with Ruby, it seems like something important really is gone. I’m as capitalist as anybody, but it seems commercialization has its dark side.

But I am glad to see _why still doing cool stuff. I spend most of my “open source fun time” on another project, Haiku. But I still have a soft spot for the old days of Ruby.

And personally I find Zed pretty funny and refreshing.

Michael Granger

said on December 1st 01:31

The canker seems to have started about the time people started making money doing Ruby consulting. I think some of the original English-speaking Rubyists saw the people that came wading in and thrashing around like they’d accidentally swallowed a whole goat and bemoaning Ruby’s failure to be the be-all, end-all language of their enterprise dreams as kind of missing out on what made it great fun. And when the moaning got really loud, some people tried to quiet the moaners down, and some of us just went on having fun with Ruby, only quiet-like and in our own back yard instead of out where everyone was getting trampled by moaners.

I can only imagine what it must have looked like to the Japanese. I wish I knew how to read and write Japanese, but sometimes I’m glad I can’t, ‘cause I’d just feel obligated to apologize a lot.

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