FOSDEM '08 is a free and non-commercial event organised by the community, for the community. Its goal is to provide Free and Open Source developers a place to meet.


Schedule: CSA on Rails: a practical case-study

Bernard Dubuisson
Day Sunday
Room AW1.105
Start time 14:00
End time 14:45
Duration 00:45
Event type Podium
Track Ruby on Rails
Language English
CSA on Rails: a practical case-study

This presentation aims at telling the story behind one of the first real-life implementations of RoR in a Belgian internet website. The CSA (Conseil supérieur de l'audiovisuel) is a public regulation authority for the media sector for the French community in Belgium. It is a small organization with approx. 20 full time agents, with a rather autonomous functioning.

In January 2007, we launched a new website entirely based on RoR, with a lot of classical CMS features. The website was done on internal resources for 80% of the work. The development had stretched over 9 months (part time) and we are still continuously improving the solution. One particularity worth noting: using mostly internal resources implied to rely on people with little development background. Practically, the internal development was done by one agent with a good web design and multimedia project management background, who learned the technology on his way. The other 20% of the work was given to a RoR code monkey. His role was to give practical support to the lead developer, code some complex and time consuming features, and take care of the hosting and deployment solution.

The presentation will not be technical : you won't learn any undocumented tips and tricks about RoR here. Rather, it will mostly give the user/project manager point of view. The aim is to give feedback on our experience to people considering using the solution (as a report on the overall strengths and weaknesses of the solution), as well as nourishing a reflexion on the impact of using Rails on the way CSA works, and to what extent the found advantages are replicable.