I have been following some of the discussion (!) about Ruby on Rails in the Enterprise on http://duckdown.blogspot.com/2006/03/more-thoughts-on-ruby-and-why-it-isnt.html. Lots of interesting discussion which raised a couple of thoughts for me:
1 It seems to me that a lot of languages (VB springs to mind) start off as "not enterprise ready" but are actually incredibly useful for a great number of non enterprise developers. These gradually over time have more and more "enterprise features" added which makes them less valuable to non enterprise developers. This raises the question of why professional developers are so stuck up about non professional developers, we need both in the industry and both types are smart people.
2 Enterprise Architecture seems to be splitting into two disciplines, "Enterprise" Enterprise architects interested in governance, interop, web services etc and "Strategic" Enterprise Architects who are interested in how to use technology and the marketplace to provide new business for their organizations. I used to think that the former was more important however I am rapidly coming to the conclusion that the latter are the vital element in a business. I think strategic architecture is going to be the growth area for the next few years.
I understand the point you're trying to make, but you're wrong in throwing Ruby and VB into the same category. Language-wise, Ruby is IMO enterprise-ready as you can get.
I dont really think that there is any such thing as a non-enterprise ready language or technology. I sucessfully replaced a Tandem non stop system with a NT 3.1 based system and it worked fine, it took a lot of architecting but it was as good as the Tandem.
Its people, architectures and processes that are not enterprise ready and these tend to gravitate to "new" technologies and languages. So whilst Ruby may (or may not) be enterprise ready many (not all) of the people and architectures using it are not enterprise ready.
personally I hate the whole "enterprise ready" rubbish. Its mainly a piece of marketing buzzspeak with a little bit of people and process basis which is thrown at any new technology. I can remeber it being used on mainframes, Unix, Windows, etc and get really fed up with the whole thing. Lets agree that there are different requirements, people, architectures, technology and processes required by different applications and move on.
Its a complex world out there and there is no "right" answer for everything.
A Web 2.0 proponent calling somethin "marketing buzzspeak"? Here we have a case of the pot calling the kettle black...
Well I think that most of the Web 2.0 stuff out there is marketing buzzspeak too.
I do think that something is happening out in the consumer space though
The original discussion started with Ruby folks attacking Mr. Gosling. I shared my opinion on this issue and of the belief that past performance is no guarantee of future results. Just because technologies such as Java weren't enterprise-ready out of the gate doesn't indicate why enterprises chose it. Java wasn't chosen for productivity but was chosen for capability. The notion of application servers, getting on the web, etc all increased its uptake. Ruby isn't enabling anything new...