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I'm Canadian. Ruby was my first programming language. I don't know Rails. Now that I know Python, a lot of my first programming projects are the kinds of things that I would use Python for nowadays.

American audiences often ask, "why would you want an embedded Ruby?"

You might as well ask "why would you want an embedded Python?"... the answer to that is fairly obvious to anyone who knows Python and C, and who has done embedded programming. So why is it less obvious to those same programmers why someone would want an embedded ruby?

Last week there was a big thread talking about how Arduino was extraneous overhead and we should be using the AVR libraries directly. I think they would have died upon hearing about running a garbage collector on a microcontroller.

The lines are rapidly blurring, given that you can fit, and power, an ARM core sufficiently powerful to run Linux (actually, you can run Linux on far smaller systems than that) with a WIFI interface and web server and run Perl on it on an SD card form-factor device... 4 years ago [1]. Of course there are plenty of niches where you still need a much lower power device, but a lot of areas where you needed that a few years back are areas where you can put a much bigger stack now and still do ok.

[1] http://maisonbisson.com/post/17379/transcend-wifi-sd-card-ha...

Arduino and AVR are 8-bit microcontrollers. ARM chips are 32- or 64-bit CPUs. There are plenty of ARM SoCs out the which can run Linux off of an SD card: raspberry pi and beagle bone black come to mind. There are plenty of use cases where an AVR chip is underkill (e.g. anything that needs parallel processing) and an ARM chip is overkill (e.g. digital thermometer).

> There are plenty of ARM SoCs out the which can run Linux off of an SD card: raspberry pi and beagle bone black come to mind.

In case you misunderstood: The above is not about running Linux off of a stored diskimage on an SD card. The ARM SoC in question fits in an SDcard. They're intended for e.g. putting in your camera so you can have wireless, wifi access to the images on the SDcard.

Other than that I agree - there's certainly still room for both. But the point is you can physically fit a Linux capable computer in an SDcard form factor, and drawing 100mA, which means the niches where smaller micro-controllers is the only alternative have narrowed accordingly.

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