If you plan to use activeadmin you have to be warned that  by using active admin you are supporting two back ends – yours and the one for active admin.
So if you have time to work for someone else go with active admin. else just do it your self.
Don’t use it!
There is one rumor that nothing starting with active* was good product. ActiveDirectory for ActiveX…. I was wondering are there exceptions ActiveSupport, ActiveRecord….

Working with Rails as a designer

Installing Rails

You have to install first ruby, rubygems, git, bundle, rails

Installing ruby

Preferable way is to install it with normal user via rvm. I am not an expert in mac so probably you need to install xcode from your disks/Internet. Then use rvm

Here is a one of the many tutorials

here are other ways for installing ruby taken from Ruby on Rails for Designers

  • Windows: One-Click Ruby Installer (I recommend using 1.8.6-26 Final Release)
  • Mac OS X 10.4: Ships with broken Ruby but you can follow the amazing guide by Dan Benjamin
  • Mac OS X 10.5: If you install the Developer Tools from Apple you will be set. Try either your installation discs or Apple’s Developer Site and download Xcode
  • Linux: While this may vary for each distribution, you will need to install ruby, irb, & rdoc

Installing rubygems

Download, extract and run ruby setup.rb

more reading here

Checkout the project

One SCM is git. install it

Then checkout it

git clone ssh://

Starting Rails project

go to the project folder you have checkout already.

cd uppstart

rvm will ask you if you trust the version of ruby specified in the project. Please agree and install it if you don’t have it.

installing is done by

rvm install ruby-what-ever-version

then you have to install bundle. This is done by doing

gem install bundler

After you have install bundler you will have the bundle command available. Bundler will try to install all the project dependencies. do this by typing


if you don’t have errors you will be almost ready to run the application.

check in config/database.yml and prepare the database specified in the development section

cat config/database.yml

If you see in development sqlite3 as an adapter then just type

rake db:setup

start the application by running

rails s

check the app by navigating to http://localhost:3000


All views are located under app.

Files starting with underscore are partials which are reused in multiple places.


Assets could be in several places.


  • app/assets – for assets which are from the application
  • lib/assets – for assets which are exported
  • vendor/assets – for 3rd party assets

If you want to add your own file include it under the




Do not add css/javascript directly in those files.

Deploying the application

Put your ssh keys on the server. This should be done once.

Then you have to put your changes on the remote repository. This is done by doing

First we need to get any remote changes by doing.

git pull
git commit -a

Then we can add our new files and commit the changed files/folders.

add the new files with

git add filename_or_folder

then commit all with a message

git commit -a -m "nice message what was changed"
git push

Finally From the application folder run

cap deploy

If you have a lot of readings then Struct is the winner.

If you have equal read/write then Hash

And forget for OpenStruct

Here is why and how I benchmark all those methods

guda: ~/vanilla_ui/vanilla_properties  (v2 *$ u=) ∴ irb
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :001 > require ‘benchmark’
=> true
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :002 > require ‘ostruct’
=> false
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :003 > n = 5000000
=> 5000000
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :004 >
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :005 >   puts “convertions”
=> nil
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :006 >
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :007 > do |x|
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :008 >“Struct init at start”) { CustomerOne =, :age);  s =‘a’);   n.times do; end }
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :009?>“Struct with write op”) { CustomerTwo =, :age);  s =; = ‘a’; n.times do; end }
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :010?>“Hash”) {  s =;  s[:name] = ‘a’; n.times do   ; s[:name]; end }
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :011?>“OpenStruct”) { s =; = ‘a’; n.times do   ;; end }
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :012?>   end
user     system      total        real
Struct init at start
1.160000   0.000000   1.160000 (  1.155457)
Struct with write op  1.200000   0.000000   1.200000 (  1.208754)
Hash  1.510000   0.000000   1.510000 (  1.507588)
OpenStruct  5.990000   0.000000   5.990000 (  5.999714)
=> true
Lets do some = operations
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :015 > do |x|
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :016 >“Struct init at start”) { CustomerMale =, :age);  n.times do s =‘a’);; end }
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :017?>“Hash”) { n.times do   ; s =;  s[:name] = ‘a’; s[:name]; end }
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :018?>“Struct with write op”) { CustomerFemale =, :age);  n.times do s =; = ‘a’;; end }
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :019?>“OpenStruct”) { n.times do   ; s =; = ‘a’;; end }
ruby-1.8.7-p330 :020?>   end
user     system      total        real
Struct init at start  9.930000   0.000000   9.930000 (  9.943670)
Hash 11.090000   0.000000  11.090000 ( 11.127766)
Struct with write op 12.230000   0.000000  12.230000 ( 12.243452)
OpenStruct still working ….

to_i or to_s is faster?

require 'benchmark'
n = 500000

puts "convertions" do |x|"to_i") { n.times do   ; "123456789".to_i; end }"to_s") { n.times do   ; 1234567890.to_s; end }"to_sym") { n.times do   ; 1234567890.to_sym; end }

user     system      total        real
to_i  0.310000   0.000000   0.310000 (  0.315844)
to_s  0.490000   0.000000   0.490000 (  0.490607)
to_sym  0.170000   0.000000   0.170000 (  0.171511) do |x|"string.to_i == number") { n.times do   ; "123456789".to_i == 1234567890; end }"number.to_s == string") { n.times do   ; 1234567890.to_s == '1234567890'; end }"string.to_sym == string.to_sym") { n.times do   ; '1234567890'.to_sym == '1234567890'.to_sym; end }"num.to_sym == string.to_sym") { n.times do   ; 1234567890.to_sym == '1234567890'.to_sym; end }"number.sym == number.sym") { n.times do   ; 1234567890.to_sym == 1234567890.to_sym; end }

user     system      total        real
string.to_i == number           0.400000   0.000000   0.400000 (  0.401863)
number.to_s == string           0.740000   0.000000   0.740000 (  0.744603)
string.to_sym == string.to_sym  0.560000   0.000000   0.560000 (  0.574106)
num.to_sym == string.to_sym     0.460000   0.000000   0.460000 (  0.459292)
number.sym == number.sym        0.400000   0.000000   0.400000 (  0.399014)

Rails tip of the day

Generating random string


Is Rails going down?

The first Rails framework was fast. then it become slow, big and the idea of convetion over configuration becomes more poisoned.

Currently to start with Rails you have to learn a lot of stuff which are added just now and is not sure how long they will stay.

Also Rails is not targeting the developers to be fast but is targeting to be the perfect framework.

The price for that is that almost a year and a half there is no new version while the they refactor it.

No goodies like scafolding, only enterprise stuff around.

That is my personal opinion on this framework.

As I like to say – you cant leave your followers without food for such long time.

Piece of wizdom

The original code

<%= select(“city”,”kind”, t(:place_types)!.each{|key, value| [value, key]}, {:include_blank => t(:chose), :selected => @city.kind}) %>

The bad code

t(:place_types)!.each{|key, value| [value, key]}, {:include_blank => t(:chose), :selected => @city.kind})

the replacement

key_values = t(:place_types).collect{|key, value| [value.to_s, key.to_s, ]}


Search Logic and whats wrong with it

The idea of the Searchlogic is to save you time and give flexibility.

The first time I saw this gem  I was very excited about it.

With only a few lines of code an you have the whole search done. I have start using it.

Once I want to apply it to a complicated search. The problem was that I have to write more code and “patches” in order to keep the Searchlogic working….

So my advice is – don’t use such boosters if you can apply your own solution. There will be aways a time when you want to extend your search and you will loose a lot of time search how to do it with the 3rd party solution.

Do it yourself.

Argh…this rmagick gem – aways difficult to install/maintain.

I have recently upgraded to Ubuntu 10.04 and I got this nasty rmagick gem error: This installation of RMagick was configured with ImageMagick 6.5.5 but ImageMagick 6.5.7-8 is in use. (RuntimeError)

google for This installation of RMagick was configured with ImageMagick 6.5.5 but ImageMagick 6.5.7-8 is in use. (RuntimeError)

then found this page in mixed English/Chinees

and finally got a page in German :)

Then I decide to write this post in English and slightly modify the solution

instead of putting

RMAGICK_BYPASS_VERSION_TEST = true in the deploy.rb

I have put this in the development.rb

and all it works – this way on the production I will be forced to use real compatible library or at least check again for another solution or gem.

AUCH! This solution doesn’t work even in development I got weird core dumps :( …so here it is another try

Here is the real working  solution:

su -
git clone
cd rmagick/
ruby setup.rb
ruby setup.rb  install

Nice code

I have just finished one method and I was not happy with the code. Then I put a comment on top of the method “Far from perfect….”.

Then I read the class – it was ugly.

here is the before

def validate
 return if is_email == false
 found = InternetComunicatorType.find(:first, :conditions => {
 :is_email => true,

 return unless found

 if != id
 errors.add(:is_email, "We have already email type")

here is the after

def validate
  if is_email
    found = InternetComunicatorType.find(:first, :conditions => {
      :is_email => true,

    if found and != id
      errors.add(:is_email, "We have already email type")

The result is much far readable

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