Let's push things forward

Published on February 01, 2018

Hello, good to see you again, and welcome to the new Ruby Toolbox!

If you haven't been following Toolbox-related news recently, here's a quick rundown:

  • Started in 2009, over the past few years the existing site was in a deteriorating state of maintenance due to a continuous lack of free time on my side
  • In early June of 2017, the Toolbox's server crashed and instead of rebuilding what we had from backups I decided to take this as a final sign to discuss the future of the site with the community, only putting an absolutely minimal static version of the site back online.
  • I reached out and asked on github whether people actually still want to have this resource - turns out many people still do, which was very encouraging, thank you :)
  • Ruby Together soon reached out to me regarding funding my work on re-building and maintaining the site, which we announced at the end of September

I immediately got started on this during evening hours in early October. Holiday season and the surrounding family events put a brief dent into progress, but in January I got back on track and today I'm proud to present to you the new (and finally fully open source!) Ruby Toolbox!

My main focus for the past few months was to provide a solid foundation based on what (at least I believe to be ;) the core of the old site - categories, project metrics, and search. I initially planned to launch as early as possible with an absolutely minimal subset, but eventually those pesky "this one more thing really needs to get done so it's nice"-tasks kept cropping up, so ~70 hours of work and ~40 pull requests later I believe we're launching with a feature set at least on par with the old site.

Categories are now maintained via the catalog repository on Github. The catalog desperately needs a spring cleaning, contributions are highly welcome!

Ruby Together and open source funding

It's pretty safe to say that without the support by Ruby Together, this would not have been possible.

Words cannot describe how grateful I am to be able to continue my work on this and actually also get paid for the time spent. Over the past almost 10 years since the site launched I put hundreds of hours of my spare time into this site for free, which became impossible to keep up in the long run.

Over the past few years, funding for open source projects has finally become an issue that is being actively discussed, solutions are coming up, and this is absolutely wonderful. The authors and maintainers of the infrastructure and tools we rely on in our daily work deserve our support, so I really hope this will only keep growing further.

If you like what I'm doing here, or maybe some other Ruby community work supported by Ruby Together, I'd like to invite you to consider setting up a monthly donation to them, be it as an individual or even the company you work for.


Another big thank you goes to Heroku for sponsoring the hosting for this new site, and to AppSignal for providing their excellent exception tracking and monitoring service for free. Thanks!

What's next

This is only the beginning. You can find upcoming tasks on the project board on github. Over the next weeks I want to add more project metrics, get started on cleaning up the catalog, provide useful help pages, improve the display of metrics (giving the values some more context in relation to other projects), and most importantly: Listen to your feedback. Let me know what you think on github, on Twitter or via mail to christoph at ruby-toolbox dot com, I'm looking forward to it!