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Service-Oriented Design with Ruby and Rails (Addison-Wesley Professional Ruby) 1st Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0321659361
ISBN-10: 0321659368
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

The Complete Guide to Building Highly Scalable, Services-Based Rails Applications Ruby on Rails deployments are growing, and Rails is increasingly being adopted in larger environments. Today, Rails developers and architects need better ways to interface with legacy systems, move into the cloud, and scale to handle higher volumes and greater complexity. In "Service-Oriented Design with Ruby and Rails" Paul Dix introduces a powerful, services-based design approach geared toward overcoming all these challenges. Using Dix's techniques, readers can leverage the full benefits of both Ruby and Rails, while overcoming the difficulties of working with larger codebases and teams. Dix demonstrates how to integrate multiple components within an enterprise application stack; create services that can easily grow and connect; and design systems that are easier to maintain and upgrade. Key concepts are explained with detailed Ruby code built using open source libraries such as ActiveRecord, Sinatra, Nokogiri, and Typhoeus. The book concludes with coverage of security, scaling, messaging, and interfacing with third-party services.
Service-Oriented Design with Ruby and Rails will help youBuild highly scalable, Ruby-based service architectures that operate smoothly in the cloud or with legacy systemsScale Rails systems to handle more requests, larger development teams, and more complex code basesMaster new best practices for designing and creating services in RubyUse Ruby to glue together services written in any languageUse Ruby libraries to build and consume RESTful Web servicesUse Ruby JSON parsers to quickly represent resources from HTTP servicesWrite lightweight, well-designed API wrappers around internal or external servicesDiscover powerful non-Rails frameworks that simplify Ruby service implementationImplement standards-based enterprise messaging with Advanced Message Queuing Protocol (AMQP) Optimize performance with load balancing and caching Provide for security and authentication

About the Author

Paul Dix is co-founder and CTO at Market.io. In the past, he has worked at Google, Microsoft, McAfee, Air Force Space Command, and multiple startups, filling positions as a programmer, software tester, and network engineer. He has been a speaker at multiple conferences, including RubyConf, Goruco, and Web 2.0 Expo, on the subjects of service-oriented design, event-driven architectures, machine learning, and collaborative filtering. Paul is the author of multiple open source Ruby libraries. He has a degree in computer science from Columbia University.
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Product Details

  • Series: Addison-Wesley Professional Ruby
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional; 1 edition (August 27, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0321659368
  • ISBN-13: 978-0321659361
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.7 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #545,822 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I've been using Ruby and involved with the NYC.rb meetup since the fall of 2005. During that time I've done Rails applications for the New York Jets, Flavorpill, BBC, Channel 4 UK, KGB, Efficiency 2.0, and my current employer Benchmark Solutions. I first started working with service architectures in Ruby at KGB. There we had a complex application with search, real-time indexing, and machine learning. That was in addition to all the standard web application stuff. Due to the complexity of the various pieces, we split it off into multiple services and I've been interested in the topic since.

My formal background is in CS with an emphasis on AI, machine learning, search, and natural language processing. I suppose that accounts for my other passion: machine learning. I organize the machine learning meetup in NYC which regularly features speakers from leading universities and labs giving talks about the latest in the field.

I'm pauldix on Twitter, Github, and most every other service on the web. Feel free to drop me a line to talk about Ruby, services, or machine learning.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I'm a little tired right now to give a thorough review, but I wanted to get something down to benefit other potential buyers. First off, let me give some background on myself so you have a point of reference. I've been programming web software and services as a hobby for the last 10 years. My forte has always been with Perl, with a recent desire to try newer languages like Python and Ruby. My particular interest in this book stems from a new project I'm working on that lends itself to a service-oriented design from the get-go. I have no other experience with Ruby or Rails except for short periods of "play time" with Rails when it first became popular, years ago. But I'm *very* experienced with service-oriented and scalable internet architectures (I work for OmniTI), so I expected much of the book to be a rehash of what I'm exposed to on a daily basis anyways.

The author (Paul Dix) immediately throws the reader into a sample web service, typical to any modern REST web application. What I really appreciated was how he stressed the test-driven development approach via rspec, although it might have been beneficial to give a bit more background into the advantages of TDD and the specifics of rspec within Ruby and Rails testing. Nevertheless there is sufficient coverage of the process to get the reader off on the right foot. There are a few bugs in the included code examples that have either been fixed in the github repository ([...]).

Chapter 2 describes the philosophies and methodologies behind service-oriented designs and the differentiators to SOA, XML-RPC and related books such as "RESTful Web Services".
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Comment 16 of 17 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback
I never review books on Amazon. But I wrote a review for Metaprogramming Ruby (Feb 2010 Pragmatic Programmers) because it was just such a must-read. And I'm writing one for this, because it's also a must-read. The target audience for this book is the intermediate Rails developer who has his all-in-one app with background processing, and is wondering "what next"? "What if tomorrow users start joining my site by the droves?" "What if I'm written up on TC / Digg / Slashdotted tomorrow?"

If I HAD to give criticism, the only thing I could think of is that this book goes into implementation details for some subjects but not others. For example, it has pages and pages of code to illustrate how to write a service in rails, Sinatra, Rack, but skips over a lot of ops related stuff. If you were going about implementing the ideas in this book, those issues would confront you far before you write your services, do your load balancing and edge caching, etc. I would love for Dix to write a second book on that topic. That's just nitpicking, though - part of the reason I think Dix went into depth with the code goes back to the target audience: it is very helpful to show Sinatra and Rack analogues to a guy who has only used Rails.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It's rare that I read a ruby book these days and learn something new in every chapter, but I did from this book. The title doesn't do the book justice. The ruby examples use Rack, Sinatra and Rails (including Rails 3 examples) to demonstrate how to quickly build and test REST services and service clients.

It covers everything from high-level architecture decisions, like when to introduce services and how to decide what goes where, to seemingly small details, like dealing with serving pagination links in apis.

The only downside is that it could have gone into more detail about how to run apps with multiple services locally.

I read it cover to cover, and frequently refer to it. I highly recommend it to anyone working on moderate to large Rails apps. It completely demystified SOA for me.
2 Comments 6 of 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback
As a software engineer tasked with implementing a new service-oriented design in Ruby, I was really hoping this book was going to teach me something new.

Instead, it spent most of the time regurgitating HTTP status code specs & explaining basic RESTful design patterns. For some reason, the author decided that the advantages SOA provides in reducing your test suite runtime were so great that they deserved reiterating over a dozen times.

Not a terrible book, but disappointing if you're coming from a professional programming background.
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Format: Paperback
I was disappointed reading this. It does have patches of good information but I felt that nearly every chapter would mention a problem space or an area of interest, mention 6 or products or libraries, ramble on about intricacies of a single library, show a few code examples for a very limited scenario, then move on to the next chapter. After reading the book cover-to-cover I don't feel that I learnt much, I feel like a mate gave me a verbal overview.
2 Comments 13 of 17 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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I give this book 5 stars because of it's fantastic content, however to people buying the book you should know that the code is outdated. This book was made back when Rails 2 was popular and now we're on to Rails 4.1 and a lot of things have changed. He also talks about Rspec which has also changed a lot.

If you're planning on buying this book I would strongly recommend that you have a good knowledge of Rails and Sinatra, as Sinatra is what you start the book with, and is also just a good framework to know. A good knowledge of Rspec is also good.
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