Rake is a build tool written in Ruby, similar to make, Ant and Phing. There is a major difference between Rake and the others, though. Unlike the rest of the tools, Rake does not provide an external DSL (like XML build file in Ant). Instead, all the task are written in pure Ruby. Therefore you gain full flexibility and can take advantage of some nice Ruby features.
What Are The Build Tools?
Generally, it is a good idea to automate every boring, complicated programming task that often needs to be repeated. Firstly, developer’s time and nerves can be spared. Secondly, the risk of doing something wrong (e.g. making a typo or leaving out one of the steps required) is minimized. Prepare the task once and don’t repeat yourself anymore.
There are many tools available and the choice is determined principally by the language and environment we use.