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Notes from setting up a Rails + GraphQL server

1. Install Rails with the version you plan on using

When I first setup this computer, I installed Rails using the system version of Ruby (v2.6.3, it seems). Weeks later, I made the following changes:

  • installed rbenv to install Ruby 2.7.0
  • Set the GEM_HOME in my .zshrc file to avoid needing sudo when installing gems

Rails generators and commands kept pointing to the original version of Ruby until I ran sudo gem install rails. I’m still not sure why I needed to run it using sudo.

2. Mixing conventions translates to confusion

Rails convention is to use snake_case. GraphQL convention is to use camelCase. I spent nearly 30 minutes trying to figure out why my gql query was failing, and it’s entirely due to the mixing of case conventions between the two.

3. About query_type.rb

Seems that the norm is to have a huge query_type.rb file which is really strange to me. The graphql-ruby maintainers liken the query type file to a routes.rb type of file since it’s handling all of the requests. Regardless, I still think there should be a simple way to break it up. All of the potential solutions I tried either relied on a previous version of graphql-ruby or just didn’t work.

4. Standing on the shoulders of giants

This personal project I’m working on is a music player - why not model this initial database using the Spotify schema?