Ruby craze sweeps Fukuoka, Japan

Programming language Ruby was created by a Japanese programmer, Yukihiro Matsumoto. However, Ruby was a minor hobby language until the appearance of Ruby on Rails.
After the Ruby on Rails fad reached Japan, the government people became interested in Ruby, because it is the first made-in-Japan programming language which is commonly used worldwide. Shimane prefecture, where Matsumoto lives, is trying to promote local software industry with Ruby technology.
Fukuoka is the largest city in Kyushu island which is located west of the main island of Japan. Three Ruby organizations are head-quartered in Fukuoka.
Fukuoka prefectural government launched an organization called ‘F-Ruby‘ [JP] with many software companies in Fukuoka. Ruby Business Commons [JP] is actively promoting Rails and JRuby to local developers. Also, I am an organizer of the oldest Ruby meetup group called ‘Rubyist Kyushu‘ [JP].
Fukuoka prefectural government offers 1 million yen ($10,000) award [EN] to the best Ruby application or Ruby promotion effort done in last 1 year.
We, Rubyist Kyushu organized a regional Ruby conference called ‘Kyushu Ruby Kaigi’ with over 200 attendees. We invited Koichi Sasada, a core developer of Ruby 1.9, and Akimitsu Sano, Founder and CEO of Cookpad as speakers. Also, Andy Hunt, the author of Programming Ruby, gave us a video lecture.
2008 was a Ruby year in Fukuoka.

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