Building The Conversation

Welcome to The Conversation

A little over a year ago I met Jack Rejtman and Andrew Jaspan, two guys who had a big idea. Knowledge of what needed to exist but less of a technical perspective on how to get there.

Fast forward to the 24th of March 2011 and we have just released The Conversation — a not-for-profit media service featuring professional editors working with academics to produce high quality analysis and comment as well as covering the latest news and research.

The site is built using Rails 3 (ruby) with a dash of Node.js for real time chat between authors, and a python service from Google called mobwrite that powers realtime collaboration.

All of the javascript is written in CoffeeScript and our CSS is written in SCSS, making extensive use of partials.

We deploy using Git/Babushka, test using Jenkins and send in-app email via Postmarkapp.

The whole site is backed by PostgreSQL 9 which is backed up regularly to Rackspace Cloudfiles, a service that also hosts our images.

Through this blog we hope to cover the whys and the hows as a way of giving back to the open source community that has helped this project so much. If you have any requests for articles get in touch.

Mike, Xav, Ben, Mat & Justin.