Ruby Re-Awakens Pune in 2006

In the early part of 2006, in my hometown Pune, everyone would associate Ruby with ‘Ratnaraj‘ or “king of precious stones” as per our ancient language of Sanskrit. Over the year things have changed, and the Ruby language and its famous framework Rails are seeing a huge surge of popularity here.

Pune is a city located in the western Indian state of Maharashtra. It is the 7th largest city in India with a population of 4.5 million, and the second largest in the state of Maharashtra. It is located roughly 120 kilometres east of Mumbai at an altitude of 560 metres above sea level.

Pune has a reputation for its several esteemed colleges and educational institutions, a reason why it is called ‘Oxford of the East’ (or ‘Oxford of India’). It has a very strong presence of the Automobile sector and is on its way to consolidate its position as the ‘Detroit of India’ too. It is also home to many software and IT companies.

A little over one year ago, Dibya Prakash and I held the first meeting of the Ruby User Group of Pune – PuneRuby. This was attended by 25 people, mostly Java developers wanting to know more about this technology. PuneRuby has grown in strength with now over 400 members.

Initially, Reevik Technologies was the only company working with Ruby and Rails. Today, every software company in Pune has started working in this technology. Big players like Thoughtworks and Persistent Systems are some of the prominent examples.

With the ever growing need of Ruby and Rails personnel in Pune, a move in the right direction has been taken by IIMM, Pune. From Feb. 2007, IIMM have introduced Ruby and Rails for all their IT related courses.

At the beginning of the year, none of the books on Ruby and Rails were available in Pune. Today, the Indian reprints of all these books are immediately available.

On a personal note, I had the good fortune to meet and talk to many Ruby Gurus around the world via my interviews for PuneRuby. With their encouragement I published my Ruby Study Notes, which finds mention on the Ruby Official site.

Ruby is poised for growth and in the coming years you would hear a lot from the Rubyists in Pune.

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