JRuby continues to develop in interesting ways. Earlier today, Zed Shaw (Mongrel’s dad) announced the release of Profligacy 1.0, which you should take a look at if you’ve got a thing for building cross-platform desktop apps in Ruby. It’s pretty cool.
Profligacy is a (wildly extravagant?) library that purports to take the pain out of using Swing components with JRuby. It uses LEL, Layout Expression Language, to bring a sort of wiki-ish flavor to component layout. This is truly bizarre at first glance, but damn cool at the same time. Basically the Ascii art you lay out with LEL translates into a Swing GroupLayout. Ah-wha? Yep. Check out some examples. I told you it was cool.
It also does some other neat stuff like auto-converting procs to Listener interfaces, but I won’t go on about that, as you can go check the release notes instead. If you’ve ever worked in Swing before, you know how painful it can be. Profligacy makes it significantly less bitter to swallow. Now stop reading blogs and go build your first cross-platform Ruby desktop app. You know you want to.