Rocky Mountain Ruby Workshops
September 24, Boulder, CO

We have a bunch of great workshops lined up for Wednesday, September 24, the day before the conference. Here is an overview of our sessions:

All workshops are charity workshops: You donate at least $25 to your charity of choice and bring the receipt or donate at the workshop to a charity of our choice. RailsBridge is an exception to this: it is a free workshop.
Sep 24, all day session


Desi McAdam

Google - 2590 Pearl St #110 from 9am to 5pm

This workshop is intended to reach out to women developers who are new to Ruby and Rails. To register, you must identify as a woman. Men, you are welcome to come if you are a guest of a woman who has registered for the class.

In this workshop, we'll take you through building a complete web application using Ruby on Rails. By the end of the workshop, you'll have an application on the internet that connects to a database and reads and writes information. We'll meet up the night before the workshop to install all of the software you need, and then spend the workshop day learning and writing code.

Total programming novices, system administrators, developers in other languages, and folks who attended our previous workshops and need a refresher are all welcome. We'll have different groups separated by experience level. Each participant needs to bring her own laptop to work on.

Desi has been in the business of building software in one way or another since graduating from Georgia Tech in 2000. Her favorite language is Ruby. She is one of the cofounders of DevChix, an organization of women software developers around the world. Desi is also active in the RailsBridge community and volunteers much of her time to teaching and increasing diversity in our community.

Desi McAdam

Sep 24, morning session

Building Web Apps with Ember.js

Jesse Cravens

SendGrid - 1401 Walnut, Suite 500 Boulder, CO 80302 from 8am - 12pm

As an alternative to other popular client MVC solutions like Backbone.js and Angular.js, Ember.js differs in that it provides 'Rails-like' defaults by convention to common coding patterns, intelligent memory management, built-in integration testing, and numerous, next generation client side persistence solutions. Join O'Reilly author, Jesse Cravens, as he presents information from his new book: O'Reilly's 'Building Web Apps with Ember.js’ as he takes the audience through the construction of the RocknRollCall demo application. Attendees should leave this session with an understanding of the following: Construct a workflow using the latest in JavaScript build and package management solutions. Use Handlebars and Ember templates. Use Ember’s router to manage application state. Use data bindings to live update the UI in response to data changes. Use Ember-Data to connect to remote data. Deliver Ember.js apps using various server side web frameworks. Test your Ember application. Modularize your code with Ember components

Jesse is a principal web engineer at frog where he works with the world’s leading companies, helping them to design, engineer, and bring to market meaningful products and services. He possesses a deep background in web application development, and has recently been focusing on single page web application architecture, the mobile web, and HTML5. Jesse’s first book, HTML5 Hacks, has been translated into multiple languages including Chinese and Japanese, and he has spoken internationally at conferences such as SXSW Interactive, Fluent Conf, Future Insights, Code PaLOUsa, and Øredev.

Jesse Cravens

Sep 24, morning session

Advanced Ruby TDD Masterclass

Matthew Parker

galvanize - 1035 Pearl St, 2th Floor. Boulder CO 80304 8am -12pm

Although there’s lots of ideas about how to test Rails applications specifically, there’s less knowledge in the community about how to test Ruby applications generally. If you had to write a command line application in Ruby from scratch with no frameworks, how would you architect it? Where would you draw the lines? When you write acceptance tests, would you test drive the CLI? What’s a testing pyramid, and why would you care?

Join us as we embark on a journey that, with any luck, will change the way you think about testing and architecting Ruby applications. The lessons learned will also help you think through the architecture of your Rails applications, and specifically how you can decouple your application domains from your frameworks, databases, etc.

I’m an admitted geek. I married a geek with a PhD. That makes me Mr Dr Geek. For the last 16 years I’ve been geeking out with programming. For 10 years, I’ve attempted to geek out professionally. For six years I’ve geeked out with Ruby. For two and half years I’ve extreme geeked at Pivotal Labs.

Matthew Parker

Sep 24, morning session

Roll your own - how to build a business

Jay Ferracane

Quick Left - 902 Pearl St, Boulder, CO 80302 from 8am to 12pm

In this interactive 4 hour session, Founder/ Designer at Angrybovine, Jay Ferracane, will provide background, context and examples of the ins and outs of running your own business, what to be expect and how to prepare for the unexpected. Exercises will touch on the keys to building your own brand, in addition to the value of good partnerships and what to do when things get tough.

Jay Ferracane inspires people to believe.

Jay spent most of his young life exploring and absorbing the globe before making his mark in the creative world by espousing the value of design with energetic enthusiasm. Prior to launching the design consultancy, Angry+Bovine, Jay built, managed and directed creative groups on both the client and agency side on behalf of some of the world's most respected companies. Having been on "both sides of the gun" has provided an unmatched perspective and an uncommon platform that not only leverages design thinking to solve business communication problems, but accomplishes strategic design goals through creativity, application and consistency. Jay now works closely with decision makers, individuals and organizations to build superlative brands and experiences.

If you ask him what he does for a living he says " I draw pictures.” But deep within those pictures, letterforms and compositions, is reasoning based on business needs that turn ideas into belief systems users can rely on.

Jay Ferracane

Sep 24, afternoon session

Development in angular.js

Joseph Rodriguez, Brendan Benson

SendGrid - 1401 Walnut, Suite 500 Boulder, CO 80302 from 1pm - 5pm

This AngularJS workshop will take you through the basics and into the best practices. We’ll start with a real world example of a complex page, then break it down into its AngularJS components while focusing on test-driving our code. If you’re interested in building complex Rails-backed Javascript applications, then come join us to witness the power and extensibility that AngularJS offers.

Joseph is a software developer at Pivotal Labs. He currently resides in Louisville, CO with his 5 cats.

Joseph Rodriguez

Brendan is a software developer at Pivotal Labs. He currently resides in Boulder with his 5 bikes.

Brendan Benson

Sep 24, afternoon session

Adopting SOA from Day One

Cloves Carneiro, Tim Schmelmer

galvanize - 1035 Pearl St, 5th Floor. Boulder CO 80304 1pm -5pm

In this workshop, we'll explain what a Service-Oriented Architecture is, its advantages, and the reasons why developers should think about it when starting an application. We will go into how complex and expensive it is to move to SOA when applications reach a specific code base size, traffic load, and will argue that using a SOA in an early stage of development is a feasible solution. We'll build a set of services and front-end applications to put into practice all the theory discussed in the workshop.

Cloves has been writing software since 1997. His career in tech has been separated into two parts: Java and Ruby. In his early days as a software developer, Cloves built web applications for large telecommunication companies, such as Manitoba Telecommunications(MTS), AMCTV,, News12, and SportSkool using Java frameworks, including Struts, Webwork and Spring. He has moved to the Ruby camp since 2006, and has enjoyed working full-time with Ruby/Rails, he has worked as a consultant, and as an employee for Unspace and Cloves wrote a couple of Ruby on Rails books, 'Beginning Rails' and 'Beginning Rails 3' for Apress. He is currently based in South Florida, and works as a Software Engineer for LivingSocial.

Cloves Carneiro

After abandoning his childhood dream of becoming an actual firefighter, Tim did the next best thing and became a software developer. He has spent the past 18 years extinguishing fires while working for technology consulting companies, telecommunications equipment manufacturers, building control systems for research telescopes, and selling things to people via a Web browser.

Tim found his love for Ruby while building service-oriented systems at, and he is currently working on a team that does surprisingly little firefighting while building and maintaining's core services platform. When he is not hacking away on his keyboard, or trying to be a good husband and father of two girls. Tim loves to run, bike, and hike in the mountains near beautiful Boulder, Colorado.

Tim Schmelmer

Human or Developer - The Human Side of Agile

Ara T. Howard, Michael Rich, Georg Apitz, Ryan Cook

Quick Left - 902 Pearl St, Boulder, CO 80302 from 1pm to 5pm

The Agile Manifesto names four components as it's foundation:

  • Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
  • Working software over comprehensive documentation
  • Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
  • Responding to change over following a plan

These tenants require, above all else, the ability to work well with other people, and with your own mind. Many engineers have had virtually no training on how to become excellent at either of these two things. This setup is a recipe for professional frustration and, ultimately, failure to excel in the creative process of building software people love.

Drawing on real life experiences of both successes and failures in this context, the half day 'Agile Engineer Manifesto' will introduce design patterns to react skillfully and productively to the internal and external human challenges today's software developer is required navigate.

Ara T. Howard is an earliest adopter, minimalist architect, and prolific problem solver.

His background includes designing large-scale 24x7 satellite processing systems, building lean technology stressing startups, and contributing countless solutions to budding developers.

Ara's contributions to the Open Source Initiative span languages and domains, but the over 100 RubyGems he has authored are closest to his heart. Ara was recently recognized as a Ruby Hero during the 2014 RailsConf ceremony.

His work, and opinions, can be mined on the intertubes by googling 'ara.t.howard', but might better be discussed in person on an excursion high above the rocky mountain treeline, where he, his wife Jennifer, and children Axel and Nova do their finest work.

Ara T. Howard

Michael Rich has worked for the past 15 years on helping individuals and teams access their potential. Michael brings expertise in psychological science, mindfulness, community building and workplace culture. Michael is a founding partner @orgdevco, and sits on the board of Sun Camp.

Michael Rich

Georg brings a background in cabinet making as well as Computer Science to his work at Pivotal. He is passionate about helping teams to work at their best and establishing processes that help them to do exactly that. When he is not solving problems and helping keep teams happy at Pivotal he enjoys building furniture and spending time with his family. And if that wasn't enough on a given day, he loves to head out for some biking or climbing.

Georg Apitz

Ryan is general technologist with a history coding in many languages, including the most important of them all: Basic.

Ruby occasionally tickles his fancy, though.

His other interests include permaculture, indigenous rights, hiking, entrepreneurship, and imagining the future.

Ryan Cook