How should I keep up to date with the ever-changing Rails community? I have been trying to learn Rails off and on for a year now and the brick wall I keep running into is the fact that I'm trying to balance learning most of the Rails' community best practices and they keep changing direction.
For example, I obviously need to learn Rails and Ruby (I've done some work with both but I've forgotten a bit). When I was using it before it was still Rails 2.3.4, so now Rails 3 is out and changed some things; I'm not sure if Ruby 1.9 had any major changes. I like my version control, and the Rails world is solidly behind Git, so I have to use Git (again I've used it before but not recently). I want to make sure my app is solid so I want to write tests; the new trend in Rails seems to be to use RSpec or similar BDD frameworks instead of the built-in test framework, and mocks/factories instead of fixtures.
I'm having a very hard time keeping up with all the things I need to pick up to be successful using Rails, and it seems that it's always changing and I end up frustrated because I will choose something, then when I research how to do something I find loads of blog posts saying don't use it anymore, use this new thing instead.
I would like to "nail down" a stack that I can use and not deviate but again I find myself constantly wondering "If the top Rails guys are using XXX now am I hurting myself by not switching to it myself?" For example I'd like to just decide 100% on:
- Framework: Rails (obviously) Source
- Control: Git Test Framework:
- Test::Unit w/Factories HTML Engine:
but whenever I try this there's a voice in the back of my heading saying I'm "doing it wrong" and should be using RSpec/Shoulda/HAML/library du jour instead.