Aaron Patterson (a.k.a. tenderlove)

Aaron is one of the cornerstones of the Ruby on Rails project and he's also part of the ruby-core team. I stumbled upon his writings on Tenderlove Making and since then I've been mesmerized by the big macho moustache he sometimes wears. He uses two spaces after periods, like a fine gentleman (and I removed them, because 2013).

As far as I understand, you don't work on any commercial software for AT&T Interactive. How do you know which are the main pain points of Rails when you're not actively using the framework to develop applications? How do you choose what to work on next every day?

I actually work for AT&T now (not AT&T Interactive). I wouldn't say I work on no commercial software for AT&T. I'm on a team that is developing many different Rails applications (services and front end apps). I play a support role on the team, so if there are Rails bugs, or support questions, that's where I come in. I try to take the feedback I get from the rest of the team and incorporate that into changes on the framework.

Working full time on Ruby and Rails means you probably spend most of your time in Ruby/C. Is there anything outside the Ruby world that's gotten you excited lately?

I've been writing lots of Scheme lately. I really enjoy the language. I've been using Chicken Scheme, and I like using it because the Chicken Scheme community is very helpful!

You usually wear suits and ties in conferences, how often do you get to wear those outside the events?

I typically never wear a suit and tie. I do it at conferences because it makes me feel more comfortable on stage. It's basically a costume for me.

Did you ever work with Corey before your latest PeepCode Play by Play? How was the experience of recording that? (Seeing the different way in which each one of you approached the problem was pretty cool).

No, I've never paired (or worked with) Corey before the Play by Play. I think we might have paired once at a conference, but nothing as intense as the Play by Play. I had a really great time. The actual recording was sort of difficult because we didn't have an extra keyboard, so I had to screen share to his machine. Then some of his gems were out of date, but the internet connection was so bad we had to give up on updating them! In spite of all that, I had a really great time.

Which language came first, Ruby or Japanese?

Ruby. Well, I started learning Japanese because of Ruby. I wanted to read blog posts and documentation, but they were all in Japanese!