The Rails Rumble: An Intridean Tradition

This weekend was the fourth annual Rails Rumble event; a software contest among Rails developers, in which smalls teams of coders bring an app to life in just 48 hours. In the week following the Rumble, the apps are judged by an expert panel of judges, winners are selected, and honor is won.

Intridea is no stranger to the Rumble. We’ve sponsored the event for the last three years, and we’ve had teams participating since the event was jump-started in 2007. Intrideans have created some interesting applications, like Run1Mile, Lyricist, Love+Loathe, Thingivore, Celebrity Passage, and Smacksale – a deal aggregator that’s still collecting data and publishing the hottest sales, even today!

This year we have a notable presence at the festivities. Not only do we have several teams competing, but our Senior Partners Chris Selmer and Yoshi Maisami are on the expert judge panel. Additionally, Kevin Gisi, an engineer and open source advocate at Intridea is one of the Rumble organizers. We love supporting the Rails Rumble because it’s a healthy competition that inspires innovation, and exemplifies the power of Ruby and Ruby on Rails.

Here’s an overview of the smart apps coming from the Intridea teams this year!


A Rocket-Fueled Kick in the App

Team: The Lonely Intridean

  • Michael Bleigh

Veteran Rails developer and open source evangelist, Michael Bleigh, came up with RailsWizard, a web-based rails application template wizard to help you get up and running even faster with your Rails app. Keeping true to the Ruby and Rails spirit of making the developer’s life easier, and to keep you from continually reinventing the wheel, Michael delivers a bright solution to circumvent the often tedious first steps of creating a Rails app. The application is open-source is available for forking on Github.

a.d.d. approved news reading

Team: My Other Car Is Your Face

  • Jeremy McAnally is an essential tool for the aspiring content minimalists on the web! With the overwhelming number of RSS feeds we all subscribe to, news sites that we frequent, and blogs that we love to read, it can be cumbersome to sort through all of the cruft to pinpoint the articles that we find immediately relevant. intelligently summarizes the content in a targeted article and gives you the short-winded version of the content, allowing you to browse more (and hopefully more relevant) chunks of data in a shorter span of time. To see the awesomeness for yourself, try it out with NYTimes, FoxNews or CNN.

IM Gateway

Team: This We Can Have

  • Dingding Ye
  • Daniel LV
  • Terry Tai
  • David Potsiadlo

IM Gateway is a super useful notification service that allows you to communicate with your application users in real-time. Using the IM Gateway API, you will be able to harness this powerful collaboration innovation and contact users from their own web applications. It acts as the IM gateway service that allows users to register their accounts with GTalk, MSN, Yahoo!, AIM, and Jabber in order to send messages to their contacts that are logged in to the site.

It’s really easy to integrate IM Gateway into your application. Now, you’ll never have a gap between IM notification and your web application. Just register on IMGateway and you and your users are ready to communicate!


Team: ZOMG Hungry

  • Jon Kinney
  • Matt Margolis (mrmargolis)
  • Chris Johnson (johnsonch)
  • Andrew Kaempf

Jon Kinney worked with his friends to create Twazinga – a purely fun app that provides entertainment by allowing users to mashup tweets and photos from Flickr. On the site you can search for anything on Twitter, target keywords from your search, and then use those keywords to search Flickr for related images. Then, Twazinga pairs those up in a pretty interface and allows users to vote the mashups up/down. Jon Kinney says, “It’s all random (and hopefully hilarious) public information, but the twist is that it’s guided by you! The hope is that we can create a more generic icanhascheezburger type site that allows users to create the hilarity themselves. If a friend posts a particularly funny overheard on Twitter, hit up Twazinga to pair a funny image with it and reply to them or share it with your own followers. If you don’t like the image that was returned you can hit “regenerate” to search Flickr again with the same keywords. Or if you are in desperate need of a laugh but the tweet you want to mash up with is missing a little something… you can use the “Extra weird?” checkbox to pepper in some hidden keywords and no one will be the wiser!” As more mashups are made, the Top 10 will be crowded with hilarious pairings of tweets and correlating images.