Why we're not on Ruby1.9

It’s been out for a while now, but as a community we just aren’t using it. Why?

There have been technical excuses, namely broken gems. It’s probably true that this is holding people back from upgrading, but gems can be fixed if we actually cared. So it’s not a technical reason.

I’ve also seen marketing excuses. Odd numbers are generally for developmental releases and even for production. Yeah that’s true in some places, but this can’t be that big of a hurdle. The other argument is that it should have been 2.0. This holds a bit more weight as a whole number bump would probably make this seem like an important update. Which it is.

We’ve normally been quick to adopt new practices and tech. Remember when REST was introduced? About a year later, we were all building restful apps and were annoyed when we had to interact with old, non-rest apis. Or the near instantaneous mass migration to git. What was different in those cases?


The guys with the well read blogs, the vocal consultancies, the regular conference speakers. In the past they said, “Hey I’m using this, it’s great, you should too”. And we did. That hasn’t happened this time.

We need I’ve-switched-to-1.9 posts and talks. Hell, lie about it, if it’ll get the community to upgrade. There’ll be problems with gems, sure, but that period will be short. We’ll make it through.

I’ll end by doing my part: I’ve switched to ruby 1.9.1, it’s great, and you should too.