As you may have noticed, a new installer has appeared in the control panel for Rails 3.2.1:

Not only does the new installer include the latest iteration of Rails, but it also sports a shiny new version of Ruby, 1.9.3. Ruby-1.9.3 is now installed on all WebFaction servers:

[demo@web310 ~]$ ruby1.9 -v
ruby 1.9.3p0 (2011-10-30 revision 33570) [x86_64-linux]

The 1.9-series Ruby features various bug fixes and library changes you might expect from a Ruby release, but it also introduces some important language changes. For example, Ruby 1.9 introduces a new syntax for creating anonymous functions:

howdy = lambda {|name| puts "Howdy, #{name}."}  # old style
hi = -> (name) {puts "Hi, #{name}."}            # new style

Ruby 1.9 introduces some other syntax and API changes, including changes to string encoding. So check out the Ruby NEWS file for more information.

Meanwhile, Rails 3.2 isn’t missing out on the fun, bringing some handy improvements, too. Highlights include a faster development mode and faster request routing. Another useful feature of Rails 3.2 is easy query explanations. In development mode, ActiveRecord queries that take longer than one half second to finish are automatically explained. In general, a new explain method makes it easier to track down slow queries and investigate indices.

To learn more about the latest developments in Ruby, check out the complete Ruby on Rails 3.2 Release Notes document.

When you’re ready, give the new Rails installer a try. If you have any questions, join us in the Q&A Community.