September 27th, 2019

8 Great Examples of Apps Written in RoR

A short list of apps that chose to use RoR in their development cycle. See how this framework steps up when used by larger companies.
Although these products may overlap with some mentioned on other lists, that's okay—many of them used multiple languages to get going. In fact, there's hardly any product that was written with a single technology; these products don't usually scale or get big on a radar.
Many of us get to use web apps, and lots of them feel the same. Although you feel the difference between Spotify and Facebook, in essence, they share the same premise of working in a browser and helping you play media files. However, at their core, they have very little in common, especially at a developer level. Due to different choices of technologies, the production stage varies depending on the tech stack; and a framework is a backbone of what the product will be in the future. Here's why RoR comes into play.

Whether it's the language simplicity, cost-effectiveness, or scalability, RoR has firmly stepped into the web realm of the Internet and can surely be called one of the main tools for creating large-scale apps. Code reuse is arguably what makes it so good—less code means a faster development cycle and better performance. A vast amount of RubyGems is another factor that gives an edge to RoR when choosing a framework. You get a full package of plugins that serve every purpose to make development easier. This alleviates a sizeable part of the job, allowing devs to focus on making their code clean and capable of running all sorts of apps.

We've condensed a number of apps that took advantage of RoR and gained large popularity among the masses thanks to just being good rather than extensive marketing enforcement. So, these are the products we can't live without.

1. Urban Dictionary

This product is a knowledge base, but more for a casual purpose. It's a go-to option if you came across an unknown phrase and want to learn what it means. It supports structure that is similar to Wiki, where each term has a detailed explanation with examples and many hyperlinks to other phrases. RoR is responsible for creating a product that also supports categories, random pages, a complex self-moderation system, and other features, including Facebook, Gmail, and YouTube integration.

It's now a well-oiled mechanism for over 75M users a month, a type of bridge between generations that helps them explore unknown sides of their language, backed by over 20k editors worldwide.
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It's now a well-oiled mechanism for over 75M users a month, a type of bridge between generations that helps them explore unknown sides of their language, backed by over 20k editors worldwide.

2. Coub

Memes, cats, and all sorts of weird stuff. Yes, that's all about Coub, a platform for short videos (up to 10 seconds long) that rarely have any depth but rather entertain the viewers. RoR has an easy time handling over 500M views a month that are cycled and can be imported from YouTube and Vimeo, while the audio track remains original.
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Although Coub has its own moderation, this site often contains videos that YouTube policies wouldn't allow to contain: even the news outlets tend to use Coub, as it's the news source where fresh videos emerge before being uploaded to other platforms.

3. Airbnb

The company is now a synonym for online hospitality service. Although they're both popular on the web and mobile platforms, it was the browser version that gave it an impetus to become a blooming success. It's nothing new from the business standpoint—just an online marketplace whereas Airbnb doesn't actually own any real estate, but the scale is truly mind-boggling. RoR has allowed it to scale up to a vast number of services in offering apartments, rooms, lodging, homestays, and all sorts of tourism-related activities.
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But more so, they've accomplished something bigger—making many overpriced hotels obsolete by bringing hospitality to a new level. No longer do you have to wait or be unaware of a future state of housing; the rating system takes care of the risk factor and is instantly available in a neat interface.

4. GitHub

Call this the heaven for developers, and rightfully so. It has everything they need for work. If you have ever touched the code, you already know about GitHub and how good it is for hosting IT projects and enabling collaboration between numerous developers. It supports a free version for open-source products but is a paid affair if the project is private.
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The scale of repositories is truly massive. Now more than 2.1M companies use this service, along with 31M developers who take advantage of easy cooperation, commentating, forking, and merging repositories between each other.

5. Kickstarter

Being the rocket-launch site for countless startups, this platform allows to bootstrap the companies of any magnitude, granted that the idea is great. It serves both partisans: everyone can become a small investor, and the company is glad to provide rewards for its backers—whether it's getting a certain payment or reaching a pre-set milestone.
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Crowdfunding is a buzzword now, and Kickstarter is the one who made it popular—Oculus Rift might have never been released without this platform. What's more, it provides surveillance for those who received money and can return funds to backers if the funded venture didn't live up to its expectations. Supporting virtually every payment method is another advantage that improves the experience when using this RoR-based global platform.

6. Crunchbase

Call it the Forbes rating for the digital world, as it gives the best portrait of how companies develop over time. The amount of funding, companies' type, foundations, and every possible parameter are displayed on dedicated pages. CrunchBase has everything a potential investor needs to see the actual state of the company and who's behind it for assuming whether it's worth connecting to begin with.
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Built on RoR and powered by Machine Learning, it was previously for startups only, but now you can't find a better source of news about any enterprise you're interested in.

7. Ask.fm

This Internet pioneer in the "ask & respond" segment gained its footing in 2010 to become the world's most popular app when someone has a question. Although it's integrated with major social networks like Facebook, Twitter, or Tumblr, it's anonymity played a deciding role in making it viral—it helped users ask questions without exposing their real persona.
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Unlike Quora, this platform is more about personal questions rather than asking complex riddles about business and IT-development topics. With over 50M monthly users, ASKfm serves as a knowledge/entertainment tool if the other parts of the Internet weren't able to give an answer.

8. Basecamp

Much like in a military bootcamp, this web tool is all about gathering professionals in the same place. Basecamp is an intuitive and streamlined platform for all kinds of dev-related activities: project management, task delegation, scheduling, document flow, activity tracking, and much more.
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Collaboration is an easy business when using Basecamp thanks to a neat interface powered by a sleek notification system and chat—and rightfully so. Simplicity is the trademark of this product that has made it user-friendly for newer consumers. It's very compatible with side programs and everyone has access to building their own extensions by using REST API. What's interesting, Basecamp is the birthplace of RoR after it has been extracted from this tool in 2004, so it's fair to say that both products are the essential parts of each other.

Ending

The list above is a solid argument about why RoR is potent and keeps creating stellar products. It's both good for massive knowledge bases and video-sharing purposes—you could notice that the mentioned brands are truly massive and would never reach those heights, had RoR not been great at scaling. Another takeaway is this framework doing great with numerous features—it facilitates videos, searches, payments systems; in fact, making GitHub speaks for itself and proves the integration power RoR brings upon itself, not to mention Gmail, YouTube, and Facebook being embedded for numerous products.

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