(Mostly a ⌘-c, ⌘-v from my post in Vlad’s forum.)
My name is Aaron, and I grew up in Honolulu, Hawaii, went to college in Southern California (majored in Computer Science), presently living in Seoul, Korea.
I have been coding since 8th grade or so and doing web dev since… ever since it was a thing you could do (before CSS existed, even). I tried all kinds of languages (Pascal, ASP, ColdFusion, C, Java, Perl, Python, PHP, C#), and in 2005, I was in the process of building a PHP web framework.
That’s when I heard about Rails (a few months before they released 1.0). It appealed to me immediately, and I dropped everything I was doing and switched over.
Since then, I’ve been using Ruby whenever possible (and when not possible: some JS, Swift/ObjC for iOS, Java/Kotlin for Android, currently looking into Flutter+Dart). I’ve used everything from Ruby 1.8 to 2.5 and Rails from pre-1.0 to 5.2, both for internal/hobby apps and paid client work.
I am still primarily a web developer (with a little bit of native app development here and there). Most of my typical projects are based on Imagine CMS, a Rails-based CMS that I built for my company, to handle client websites with thousands of pages and thousands of simultaneous visitors. (It is on Github, but mostly just in case something happens to me… it is not a true open source project.) The Imagine CMS-based projects have been very successful.
However, I have also built a number of large Rails apps that did not fare as well, often due to performance and resource requirements (especially RAM). Same for the APIs I’ve built using Ruby… they are just too slow and hard to scale.
So when I discovered Crystal, the tagline appealed to me immediately. I’ve been using Crystal for nearly two months now, and while I discovered quickly that it is definitely NOT just a faster Ruby, I am enjoying it. A lot. Discovering Crystal felt a lot like discovering Ruby for the first time! I don’t know how I didn’t encounter it sooner, but still, I’m glad I did.