Plugins are the official way to bend Rails to do your bidding. Creating a plugin is a great way to share your Rails extensions with others who may find them useful. Until recently though, resources on plugins have been scattered around various blog articles and mailing list posts.
Mr. Rails Podcast Geoffrey Grosenbach has pulled together these various resources and done the homework for you. Presented in several parts, here is Part I of The Complete Guide to Rails Plugins.
This first installment is an introductory overview. He covers how to find and install plugins, lists the various points of entry into your Rails app that plugins can hook into as well as summarizing the parts they generally consist of. He’s got an explanation for each default file and directory that gets generated for a new plugin.
With this primer you’ll be all set for making your own plugin when Part II comes around.