First question, barring any obvious technical and platform differences (Node vs Ruby), should Discourse adopt Fastboot?
I personally think we should. Having fast (and potentially cacheable) HTML available to users without requiring JS to execute would be great for the site experience as well as things like SEO and accessibility. In my day job I focus on optimization for search, and prefer server-side rendering when available at least for the initial page load. Beyond that single page apps generally have a better experience with proper URL/history management.
If Fastboot was not able to be ported to Ruby/Rails for usage with Discourse and required Node, should Discourse add Node for the rendering portion alongside the Ruby/Rails parts?
This I am torn on. On one side, I love Node and use it as my primary platform both personally and at work, but outside of rewriting Discourse in Node, I feel it would be too much. I guess it would depend on the amount of pieces that would have to be maintained to accomplish this, but if it was easily isolated and worked similarly to any other client just as a Node process, that might not be so bad.
I wanted to open discussion on this as I think it is interesting and wanted to know what people think.