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Anticipating Change

Since the announcement was made right before Christmas that Merb is going to be merged into Rails, everyone and their brother has seemingly had something to say about the situation. I have to admit that when I first heard the news, I fell into the camp of dissenters. I’ve been using Merb for the past six months, and during that period I’ve become quite attached to the framework. While I think Rails brought a lot of great new concepts to the table, Merb proves that there’s still lots of room for improvement in this space. I feared that the advancements made in Merb would be somehow diminished were they to be merged into Rails.

That being said, the new joint Rails and Merb core team has a big challenge ahead of itself in defining the scope of this project. I would imagine that there would be a desire to keep at least a modicum of backwards compatibility with existing Rails applications, but at the same time there needs to be an evolutionary progression. While not quite a paradigm shift, there are major new concepts being incorporated into Rails from Merb.

I have no doubt that the team will be able to pull it off. I’m over my initial hesitation that the merge is a good idea, and more than anything I’m excited to see how the team will choose to proceed and how Rails 3 will take shape. Even if the only beneficial products of the merge are a well-defined public API and a more modular framework there’s still a lot to which we can look forward.

and tagged with merb, rails, and ruby