Staying on Top of Your Ruby on Rails Applications: Upgrades, Special Projects & More

Your code doesn’t exist in a vacuum; it’s part of a fluid and interconnected digital landscape. As that world changes, your code must adapt in order to continue to function securely and with high performance

At Neomind Labs, we like to think of February and March as “Special Projects & Upgrades Season” (trademark pending), in part because Ruby and Rails versions tend to reach their end of life in the first half of the year. Ruby 2.7 is next up on April 1(no fooling), with Rails 6.0 shortly after on June 1. We encourage all of our clients to do a light audit to see where their Ruby on Rails application can use upgrades and which quality of life improvements and special projects deserve attention.

If you don’t know where to begin your audit, check out our list of special projects and updates that Neomind Labs has helped clients accomplish in the past.

Transition to Open-Source

A large provider of genetic counseling services came up against a steep price hike. A third party conference system was charging them an exorbitant amount and failing to meet all of their needs. We assessed their options and found that we could bring the solution in-house and utilize open-source to build on their existing Ruby on Rails application. This allowed them to tailor the solution to their specific needs,  improve the overall experience for their clients, *and*  improve their security posture, all while saving on unnecessary expenses!

From in-person to in-house

The American Board of Allergy & Immunology had an in-person testing and certification process that occurred once every ten years. They were motivated to find an online solution that would increase convenience for the board-certified doctors looking to recertify.  Off-the-shelf options were too rigid to meet all of the exam criteria. Neomind Labs worked together with The ABAI to build a certification process into their existing Ruby on Rails application. Now, ABAI has full control and ownership and customization of the platform, and allergists can certify once every six months. The best part: the total cost to build is estimated to be at or below the three-year cost to license an off-the-shelf solution. Now that they’re in year 5, it’s paying for itself.

Is your allergist certified? Check here! (

Rebuilding in Ruby on Rails to Increase Collaboration

An Ivy League university  library had a catalog metadata system that was written in Java. While it worked for their immediate needs, they sought a platform that would allow other school libraries to collaborate and contribute. Neomind Labs worked to rebuild their platform in Ruby on Rails using tools that have become standard for metadata indexing and searching. The university then open-sourced the project on GitHub, making it accessible to their network of colleges and universities interested in collaborating.

Restoring History with Open-Source had a pilot project to index previously unavailable metadata about female authors from the 1800s, including doctors. As you may recall, women were not allowed to contribute to certain academic fields until the 20th century, so all of that data was decentralized. Our Ruby on Rails developers built them a platform that was designed to collect information from partner universities and institutions, and make it available in one place, using open-source technology. We helped them keep it running for five years, and then handed it off to an internal team.

Your software only exists in relation to the things around it, which are always changing! Routine check-up are a critical part of preventing application downtime. This includes upgrading Ruby, Rails, moving data to the cloud with Amazon S3 (or Google Cloud, Azure, Digital Ocean, etc), and ensuring that plugins and  RubyGems are still in use and up to date. Neomind Labs’ primary mission is stewardship, or consistent and conscious care of your code. Our dedicated team of developers is in place to look after your code long-term, so you can focus on the things you need to.

If you have been putting off any special projects, we encourage you to kick it over to us! You might be surprised how little effort can yield dramatic quality of life improvements and innovation you can bring to your customers. Whether you're a current or a potential client, reach out to us!  We’re happy to take a look at your code and give you an estimate of the amount of time it would take.  Book a discovery call or contact us for more information!


  • This is a great time of year for routine maintenance and special projects.
  • All you need to do is contact us with a general idea of what you’d like to do, and we’ll handle the rest!

About Neomind Labs

Focusing on long-term maintenance and operational support.

Neomind Labs is a software development firm that improves and maintains software applications using Ruby on Rails. We implement and support applications while taking responsibility for the codebase.

Our stewardship services are for proactively managing upgrades, patches, transitions, and improvement. We act as an internal development resource for clients who don’t have a full-time development team, or who need to augment existing staff.