For an overview of the need-o-tron visit Richard Pope's introductory blog post
Need-o-Tron is a Rails 3.2 application. It is built with ruby 1.9.2 and is only guaranteed to work with that and 1.9.3, though it should be compatible with ruby 2.0
To get up and running you'll need mysql, elasticsearch, ruby and bundler installed. On a mac we recommend using homebrew to install the former two.
Once those requirements are satisfied, getting the app up and running should just be a case of running:
bundle install rake db:setup rails server
Need-o-tron designed to work as part of a suite of applications, authenticating against an OAuth provider such as Sign-on-o-tron
It does that via the GDS-SSO gem. See that project's README for configuration details. It's an OAuth2 provider, and you could alternatively use any other OAuth2 provider.
If you don't want to authenticate against a separate app there's also a basic strategy for development use that will simply use the first user in your database. To set that up you'll want something like:
% rails console u = User.new(:name => 'First User', :email => 'email@example.com', :uid => 1) u.permissions = ["signin", "admin"] u.save exit