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Ruby vs Python Performance. How to pick the right technology?

Notwithstanding the discussion among different skill-levelled developers, we will pay attention to one issue - Ruby vs Python performance. 

High-performance language allows you to create scalable and fast software with a high degree of protection. Among the impressive number of programming languages, we’ve chosen two of these since it is generally accepted that they are quite similar to each other. 

We suggest focusing on the main aspects that will help to better understand the differences between these two languages ​​and give them a more detailed description. Let’s begin.

Language syntax

Let's start with the similarities. The syntax of both languages ​​is characterized by such qualities as:


  • readability

  • organization 

  • clarity


However, the approaches that Ruby and Python used to solve various problems differ significantly.

The features of Ruby are flexibility and a lot of possibilities for programmers. Some elegance (and even grace) are typical for this language (hence the connection with the name of the gemstone) and also the ability to experiment with tricks. 

Here is an example of Ruby code:



Ruby’s versatility has its downside. The search for bugs is often complicated, which in turn increases the time spent working on code passage. This can be attributed to the shortcomings.


Python has a more object-oriented approach to programming. Its main goal is to make everything visible and readable for the programmer, since it is aimed primarily at increasing the productivity of the programmer himself. Its syntax is as simple as possible: there are no semicolons, special characters, or keywords.

The Python code looks like this:



Maybe Python doesn’t have enough elegance, but it has a significant advantage in learning how to code and debug problems.

Python syntax makes it suitable for most projects. The readability of the code also makes it easier for newcomers to join the development team.

Frameworks


Ruby is very difficult to perceive separately from its popular Ruby on Rails framework, because it is with its help that web applications are created.

In turn, Python is often found in its pure form, although it has its own frameworks, the most famous of which is Django.

An interesting feature is that the user base of Python is wider than that of Ruby. Therefore, it is often possible to meet Python experts who do not use Django, but everyone who develops with Ruby will have experience with Rails for sure.

Both frameworks are based on interpreted scripting languages. This results in almost identical performance. This is about the similarities.

Now a little more about the characteristic features of each of the frameworks.

MVC or MTV?


Each structure provides all the concepts of traditional MVC environments (Model-View-Controller scheme), such as:


  • models

  • views

  • controllers and database migrations


Only in Django the name of the template is slightly different and may be misleading at first. This is similar to MVC, but the View is called Template, and Controller is called View. So we get MTV. The essence remains the same.

File ordering


Another difference between Ruby on Rails and Django is how they locate the files inside the project.

In Rails when adding a new component, you must go to a special place in the general structure.

Django uses separate applications for each component. Each of them contains its own classes of models, views, and templates. This can be convenient if your project is developing rapidly.

Communities


Both behind Ruby and Python are large-scale communities with numerous user groups all around the world, with information blogs and conferences. 

Both languages ​​are open source, which means that many people collaborate and help with projects. This opens up unlimited possibilities for developers in finding the right code. There are many programs developed by the community. Plugins can help with most tasks.

Each community is affected by the creation of updates, ways of creating software, and in general, the direction of the language. And here the differences begin.

Ruby is originally a general purpose programming language. Although there are other Ruby structures, such as Sinatra or Lotus, most of Ruby belongs to Rails. Actually, it was thanks to the appearance of Rails in 2005 that Ruby gained such popularity. Rails is mainly centered around web development.


Python, by contrast, goes far beyond web development. It is often used for academic purposes. There are many people who use Python to create:

  • geographic information systems

  • research-oriented projects

  • test automation systems

  • mathematics etc

Famous Projects


Both programming languages ​​are widespread in the modern world of technology. The lists of projects developed on their basis are impressive and continue to grow. Here are just some of the most famous ones.


Python

Ruby

Spotify

Eve Online

YouTube

Dropbox

Pinterest

Google 

Quora

Instagram

Reddit

National Geographic

Airbnb

Hulu

Bloomberg

Github

Kickstarter

Crunchbase

Groupon

Basecamp

Some statistics


Consider both programming languages ​​in the context of popular indexes for the study of rating PYPL and TIOBE.*

The purpose of the indices is to give a general idea of ​​the feasibility of learning and applying a language.


TIOBE assesses the popularity of programming languages ​​based on a count of the results of search queries that contain the name of the language. The rating is calculated using data from popular search sites Google, Bing, Yahoo!, Wikipedia, Amazon, YouTube and Baidu.

PYPL ratings are based on an analysis of how often Google searches for language tutorials.

The data of both indices are updated once a month.


*May, 2019


Python

Ruby

PYPL

27,34%

1,4%

TIOBE

7,83%

1,34%

What language to choose?


Both languages ​​are quite similar - they are fast, efficient and have a large army of loyal followers. The question here is rather what programming style is closer to you or your team and what goals you are pursuing.

YSBM team recommends using Python or Ruby depending on each case to achieve your goals with maximum effectiveness.


Use Python if:

  • your application will have a lot of calculations and a lot of data processing

  • you are accustomed to observing deadlines

  • you want to get skills with a wide range of applications


Use Ruby if:

  • you want to quickly create prototypes of intensive traffic applications

  • you tend to a large selection of plugins

  • you are wanting stable community support

Conclusion


Objectively speaking, there are no things that Python can do and Ruby cannot, and vice versa. Both of them can pretty much solve any problem. Not to mention they both have excellent frameworks that can cope with similar tasks using their unique approaches. The choice is on you.

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