I think Ruby's calling syntax makes the distinction between variables and methods much more casual. Of course, that goes as far as having no public instance variables, just methods, but it looks the same as methods anyway. The equivalent in Python is actually less explicit, because the name embodies the privacy (leading underscores) and it tends to be casual what is public and what is not. You can always fix things up later with property, but I seldom do that.
You saw this right?