Twitter reportedly dumping Ruby on Rails

Twitter may or may not be dumping Ruby on Rails. Who cares? There is enough investment going into Rails that any short-term deficiencies in the technology are just that: short-term.

TechCrunch is claiming that Twitter, that service that lets Twits tweet, is dumping Ruby on Rails after two years due to scalability problems. Twitter has responded by declaring its just as much a fan of Ruby on Rails as ever, and instead is limiting "tweets" to 139 characters (instead of the standard 140) because 140 is "taxing the system."

That one extra character must be one heck of a straw to break the Twitter back. (By the way, it seems like a rather odd way to deal with the problem. Imagine if email providers Microsoft or Zimbra boosted performance by requiring one less word per message...?)

I've heard the scalability and performance claims before against Ruby on Rails, but I've also talked with companies like Engine Yard who insist that Ruby on Rails is not inherently unscalable - it just needs a practiced hand to make it scale. Indeed, Benchmark's investment in Engine Yard was fed primarily by a desire to make Ruby on Rails more scalable.

Twitter may or may not be dumping Ruby on Rails. Who cares? There is enough investment going into Rails that any short-term deficiencies in the technology are just that: short-term.

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About the author

    Matt Asay is chief operating officer at Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu Linux operating system. Prior to Canonical, Matt was general manager of the Americas division and vice president of business development at Alfresco, an open-source applications company. Matt brings a decade of in-the-trenches open-source business and legal experience to The Open Road, with an emphasis on emerging open-source business strategies and opportunities. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CNET. You can follow Matt on Twitter @mjasay.

     

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