The MacOS X based Ruby implementation MacRuby is now available in the 0.4 release, which adds an embedding API for using Ruby to script Objective-C apps, a new threaded GC, 64 bit support, and a graphics library along the lines of Processing called HotCocoa::Graphics built on Core Graphics and Core Image.
Clojure, a LISP-style language for the JVM, is gaining interest quickly. One of the reasons is definitely its approach to concurrency which builds on Software Transactional Memory (STM). We talked to Stuart Halloway who's writing the first book on Clojure for the Pragmatic Programmers.
There are many JRuby libraries on top of Java GUI toolkits. Monkeybars is a JRuby MVC framework for building GUI applications, and it's now available in version 1.0. We talked to James Britt about Monkeybars.
JRuby 1.1.6 is now available. The latest release brings the usual list of speed improvements and bug fixes, but a big new feature is the full support for parsing Ruby 1.9 source code, as well as improved Ruby 1.9 support.
The Ruby FFI library allows to access native code loaded from shared libraries. Created for Rubinius, it was recently ported to JRuby, MRI (1.8 and 1.9). Ruby FFI 0.2.0 has now been released.
GUI testing is a hard and often neglected task. We take a look at two open source solutions for writing SWT and Swing tests, SWTBot and Marathon, and how they can be used from JRuby. We talked to Ketan Padegaonkar (SWTBot) and Dakshinamurthy Karra (Marathon).
Smalltalk, a language that has had a big influence on Ruby, is making a comeback. We take a look at the current situation and talk to Randal L. Schwartz about Smalltalk.
IronScheme, an implementation of Scheme for the .NET runtime, is ready for developers to try out. IronScheme adheres closely to the R6RS Scheme standard and currently passes 8,881 of the 8,897 tests in the PLT R6RS test suite.
The llvmruby project provides Ruby bindings for LLVM. Yarv2llvm is a project built with llvmruby which translates Ruby 1.9 opcodes to LLVM bitcode, which can be compiled down to native code, using LLVM's JIT functionality. Also: the Rubinius VM, currently rewritten using C++, now also comes with LLVM.
In this interview filmed at RubyFringe 2008, Tom Preston-Werner talks about how both Powerset and GitHub use Ruby and Erlang, as well as tools like Fuzed, god, and more.
The upcoming MacRuby release will have some features that allow to embed the runtime and use Ruby to script Objective-C based applications.
Sapien Technologies has made available ActiveX PowerShell (ActiveXPosh), a free scripting tool which allows calling the Windows PowerShell from any COM compatible scripting language like VBScript or JScript. ActiveXPosh is useful to enhance existing scripts to make use of the PowerShell functionality.
In an attempt to fill in an existing gap, NSoftware has made available a power shell toy, named PowerShellASP, which allows ASP.NET programmers to access the functionality of Windows PowerShell from inside ASP pages.