This week's book giveaway is in the OO, Patterns, UML and Refactoring forum. We're giving away four copies of Refactoring for Software Design Smells: Managing Technical Debt and have Girish Suryanarayana, Ganesh Samarthyam & Tushar Sharma on-line! See this thread for details.
In Java, you always declare variables, and you use "static" to make something a class variable. In Ruby, you don't declare things, and you use naming conventions to tell Ruby what kind of a thing it is. Just how it works.