Open Sourcing Belfast Ruby

Last Tuesday, Shopkeep kindly hosted the second Belfast Ruby meetup of 2014 in their lovely office on Ormeau Avenue. After Barry Gordon’s informative talk on test driven development, Coby Chapple of GitHub took to the stage to demonstrate how to set up a static website using Jekyll and host it for free using GitHub Pages.

This was the perfect time to unveil the new

We’d been working towards making a better website for Belfast Ruby over the last couple of weeks, with cleaner code and a cleaner design. Jekyll, the static-site generator that Coby discussed, was used to build the website, before it was hosted with GitHub Pages.

Jekyll makes it easy to quickly create sites and effortlessly maintain blogs and you don’t even have to know Ruby. Updating the site with new event information is now as easy as creating a new markdown file with the content, as Jekyll uses Liquid templating language, to take care of the rest. We’d definitely recommend you give it a try in your future projects.

Open Source

This year we want to emphasise that Belfast Ruby is an open community, with a focus on collaboration and sharing. That’s why we’ve open sourced the website and we’re eager for others to get involved. Anyone is free to contribute to the project, whether it’s a new feature or improvement, or lending a hand by working on any of the project’s outstanding issues. Even something as simple as adding to the list of useful Ruby and Rails learning resources would be helpful.

How to Contribute

If you’re keen to get involved, head on over to the belfastruby-website repository on GitHub and contribute by working on an improvement to the website or use GitHub Issues to suggest an enhancement/report a bug.

Check out the project’s README file for a guide about how to get the site up and running locally, making changes and submitting your code. Make sure you check out this great workflow guide for working within a GitHub project too. In the README we’ve also listed a few ideas we had about enhancing the website that you could bring to life.

Take a look at the new website and let us know what you think.

Happy hacking!

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