MacRuby 0.5 Beta 2 improves compatibility
One month after the release of the first beta, the MacRuby developers have announced the availability of the second beta for what will become MacRuby 0.5. The 0.5 version is an LLVM based implementation of Ruby for the Apple platform. The latest release of the Apple Inc free software project includes a number of bug fixes and performance improvements.
Following several compatibility fixes, the development release can now run rdoc, ri, Rack and Sinatra. The developers mention that they now able to run simple Sinatra and Rack web applications on MacRuby with a Grand Central Dispatch based web server. This appears to be an early step in creating more efficient, multi-core aware web services and the developers promise to cover the details of this implementation in a future blog posting. The 0.5 beta 2 release also features experimental support for the BigDecimal, OpenSSL and JSON extensions. Other improvements include a better ahead-of-time compiler, which can generate fat binaries for selected architectures, new deployment utilities and the return of DTrace static probes to the VM, a feature of MacRuby 0.4.
The developers note that the release is intended for testing and experimentation purposes only and use in production environments and on mission critical systems is not advised. Users who find any bugs are asked to report them so that they can be addressed before the final release. The latest stable release of MacRuby is version 0.4.
The announcement has more details on the changes in this beta. MacRuby 0.5 Beta 2 is available to download (direct download) for Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard. The developers advise Leopard (Mac OS X 10.5) users wishing to use MacRuby to build the sources from the repository. Sources are released under the Ruby license. The developers expect to release one more beta before shipping the final MacRuby 0.5 release.