So I titled this “How to be an ally,” but that’s a lie. You can’t be an ally. No one can. Ally-ness isn’t something that you can have intrinsically, any more than you can inherently be kindness, or rudeness. You can do ally actions. So probably a better name for this is How To Do Ally Work. But I’m getting a bit ahead of myself.
Bundler, Rubygems, and rubygems.org are vital infrastructure that every Rubyist uses just about every day. Over the last year, that infrastructure has seen a huge amount of change. This is an overview of the changes, an update on where things are now, and an explanation of where we’re going soon.
This is a difficult blog post to write. At Cloud City Development, we had many conversations about the problems with diversity and sexism in tech, such as women reporting harassment and abuse at tech conferences, online conversations challenging the Ruby culture, and community struggles to make everyone feel welcome, especially marginalized groups. As individuals, employees, and Ruby community members, what is our role in creating the kind of community we want to be in?
Business people and technology people are different. They use different language, think differently and worry about different concerns. Both sides of this divide are doing the best they can, but the old project management paradigm isn’t appropriate for software development. Agile methodologies address the very root of all the problems, shortening the feedback cycle to expose mistakes and misunderstandings quickly, when they are cheap to fix.
Last week I went to Tel Aviv, Israel for the Rails Israel and DevConTLV conferences, where I gave three talks on new developments in the Ruby community. The first talk was about how Bundler took down Rubygems.org last year, what we did to fix it, and the lessons that we learned as a result.