Speak French well with La langue française, a Rails application deployed on Vultr with Cloud 66

This case study showcases La langue française, an online learning platform and publication that teaches people how to speak French. La langue française hosts their Ruby on Rails application on Vultr with the help of Cloud 66.

Speak French well with La langue française, a Rails application deployed on Vultr with Cloud 66

La langue française background

La langue française was created by Nicolas Le Roux in 2015, and is based in France. This friendly linguistic learning platform allows ordinary people to improve their French-language skills.

The company’s mission is to help everyone succeed in life regardless of their education or background by providing tools that teach you how to speak and write French well. The La langue française platform also offers a high quality publication about French language and literature.

La langue française features:

  • Online dictations - have a look at a collection of mini-dictations to progress your writing in French.
  • Synonyms - offers a rich database with synonyms for French words. It allows users to vote for the best synonyms and offer suggestions for each word.
  • Dictionary - allows you to easily find all the definitions of French words with their etymology, phonetics, illustrations, the historical development of the word use, examples of quotes, synonyms and antonyms and much more.
  • Conjugation - Look for a verb and you will be able to find its conjugations in the present, past and future. Test your knowledge of conjugation thanks to our quizzes.

Who is using La langue française? The platform is created for those speaking French as a second language to help them become proficient. However, it provides a lot of resources for the native speakers too.

How to get started? Anyone can use the service for free, however, we would advocate becoming a premium member, to support an independent platform dedicated to the French language. You will directly contribute to the publication of journalistic articles to highlight our beautiful language.

What are La langue française’s business needs?

La langue française is a small technology and media company that I run myself,  managing an editorial team of three people. To be able to scale such a company to over three million unique visitors per month, I needed to set up automation tasks with lots of background workers. That’s why I switched the website from WordPress to a Rails application with a headless WordPress as a CMS.

As I don’t have any skills in DevOps and Server Management, I found out about Cloud66 to help me deploy the new app and set up the background job system with Redis and Sidekiq.


As of today, I have dozens of workers handling different kinds of tasks such as automatic Social Media posting, SEO-related tasks like updating meta tags and sitemaps, and jobs related to business development.

What is your current infrastructure setup?

The app is a Rails app using PostgreSQL, Redis, and Sidekiq for background jobs. I use ForestAdmin to manage all the data in an administration panel.

I chose to switch the website to a Rails app because I have nearly five years of experience with that technology stack. Rails allow great performances with a lot of flexibility for future developments: user interface, Stripe integration, interactive games, etc. Along with Rails, I use Stimulus.js to create quizzes. Quizzes allowed me to increase the engagement rate of my users and reduce the bounce rate by 27%.

The servers are hosted on the Vultr cloud, as they have a data center located in the Paris area. I have been using Vultr for three years now and they have been fantastic so far!

Why did you choose Cloud 66?

Cloud66 is the first service I use to deploy a Rails application myself. Before, I was using Heroku. I like the simplicity of Cloud66 and their detailed guides that answer pretty much every question you may have. Their pricing is also attractive compared to Heroku.

One Cloud66 feature that I like is the StackScore that helps you to measure and improve application reliability. Within Cloud66, I can manage backups, update NGINX rules, add load balancers, and so on.

Lastly, what are La langue française 's future plans?

La langue française is growing a lot in terms of traffic, along with new websites that I launched in the same industry such as Le bon synonyme, a website dedicated to giving the best synonyms of a French word.

In the next few weeks, I will be launching our own training platform to help people hone their French. The first online training course will tackle the most common grammar mistakes that French people make. We will probably create more specific lessons about French expressions and literature in the future.

One other project I have is to create an English <> French dictionary. I have accumulated plenty of data about French words and I want to allow English speakers that are learning French to access it in their mother tongue.

Merci

It is fabulous to work with Nicolas Le Roux from La langue française. Nicolas merci for finding the time to chat with us about La langue française and your experience with Cloud 66 for Rails. It's always a pleasure to discover all the unique ways in which our customers are using Cloud 66 products.

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