Selenium on several machines was failing with Connection Refused errors. This turned out to be caused by IPv6 entries (for example, “::1 localhost”) which were added by a recent MacOS upgrade. Commenting out those entries seemed to fix the problem (or work around it, anyway).
Some people expressed a style preference, in rspec, for “pending” rather than an empty “it” block, to make it easy to search for pending tests. Excessive pending tests may be an anti-pattern. On the other hand, writing pending tests, at least temporarily, may be a good way to sketch out an area of functionality before it is implemented.
We have sometimes found that editing selenium tests (but not other ruby files) in IDEA is incredibly slow (as in, 30 second pauses). Two things to try are removing the gems directory from the project (in favor of just those gems which you need to be able to look at in IDEA), or at least removing the selenium gems. Another such example is that IDEA can be really slow editing the end of a long fixture file. This is probably IDEA 7.0.3 or 7.0.4.