Whats the difference between "Ruby" and "Ruby on Rails"

Whats the difference between "Ruby" and "Ruby on Rails"

I've looked, but cannot find anything.

Alright I understand that your using ruby for the base of a web
development application but is the same thing or are there differences
in the language to allow the user to do web development in an easier
manner that is geared specifically towards web development.

Ruby is a programming language while rails is a framework done with ruby, a framework is a set of libraries and tools.

Ruby is a flexible language, in that you can open foundation classes and add new abilities to existing things, like maybe a String gets a new method, for example. Rails uses this concept in places to give native Ruby constructs new web-centric powers.

As far as I understand, Rails couldn't exist as it does without the metaprogramming madness possible using the Ruby language, so it's pretty much a chicken-or-egg problem. DHH (the original author of Rails) is often quoted as saying that he couldn't have written Rails without Ruby. He started out to write it in PHP, and abandoned that when it quickly became too hard to get where he wanted to go.

PHP 5.3, which wasn't around when he did this little experiment, begins to introduce some better reflection and metaprogramming hooks (the equivalent of method_missing might be the new __call() function in PHP5) but even those are seriously limited by the fact that your classes are frozen at the time they are subclassed from their parents, and cannot be opened again without installing some very cutting-edge extensions to the language. These extensions in turn need to be compiled into the PHP on your server, so you basically eliminate 99% of all hosting providers when you say that.

There's more, and I'm hardly the expert to explain it all to you, but if DHH says it, then it must be true!

Walter