JRuby to Red Hat

Red Hat hires JRuby core developers Nutter and Enebo

Some big news surfaced from the three day JRubyConf in Minneapolis yesterday morning, as it was confirmed that core team developers behind the hybrid JVM language were set to move to Red Hat.

Charlie Nutter and Tom Enebo announced at the conference that they were indeed transferring from Engine Yard to Red Hat, news which Nutter later reiterated on Twitter:

But Engine Yard are still going to be part of the JRuby development process, having been the steward of the JVM language since 2009. Previously, the Java implementation of the Ruby language was housed at Sun HQ, before Oracle's acquisition of the company made things slightly unsteady. Fortunately, Engine Yard stepped in, seeing the benefits of the potent combination of Java and Ruby.

Bill Platt acknowledged that Engine Yard and Red Hat's partnership would be a close one here, saying that they would "work closely with Charles and Tom as well as Red Hat to continue development of JRuby and collaborate on JRuby features to support customers running on [sic] JRuby on Engine Yard Cloud." This is great news.

Across the waters, JBoss chief Mark Little was clearly excited to welcome the duo to the community writing in a blog post:

I am extremely pleased to be able to announce that Charlie Nutter and Thomas Enebo have joined us, bringing with them their skills around jRuby. Both Charlie and Thomas have been instrumental in making jRuby what it is today, both technically and from a community perspective. They'll be working with various teams in JBoss and Red Hat, including the obvious candidates such as TorqueBox, Immutant and OpenJDK, but also helping us deliver on our polyglot visition. I can say that bringing them to Red Hat has been almost 2 years in the making, but it's time that has been well worth spent and I have great expectations for their future here. Therefore, please join me in welcoming Charlie and Thomas to the JBoss/Red Hat family!

It's a big coup for Red Hat in JVM terms - welcoming another language into the JBoss fold. JRuby will undoubtedly get the love and attention it deserves in that community. But perhaps we can read more into this announcement. As Ryan Paul noticed on Ars Technica, Nutter's tweet mentions 'other JVM languages' - could this perhaps mean Gavin King's JVM effort Ceylon? We await to see what else Nutter and Enebo put their minds to. Either way, this Red Hat move is a bold one, but bright for the JVM.

Chris Mayer

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