[ANN] ActiveRecord English Like Queries v0.0.2

I am pleased to announce the release of English Like Queries [pronounced
in a proper British accent] v0.0.2

Changes:
klass.where ‘name includes’ => [‘abc’, ‘def’] now defaults to a .find
:all query–much nicer.

English Like Queries:

Typically AR basically stinks to type in–it is way too wordy, and, for
lack of a better term, SQL like.
klass.find :all, :conditions => [“name LIKE ‘%?’”, ‘fred’]

This library condenses that to be a little more englishy, by allowing
hashed parameters that are parsed for meaning, ex:

klass.where ‘name starts with’ => ‘fred’

This reads better, is much faster, has support for regex, case
sensitivity, etc. without the pain of SQL.
Currently as a rails plugin.
Check it out.

http://code.google.com/p/ruby-roger-useful-functions/wiki/EnglishLikeQueries

-=R

Roger P. wrote:

Typically AR basically stinks to type in–it is way too wordy, and, for
Currently as a rails plugin.
Check it out.

http://code.google.com/p/ruby-roger-useful-functions/wiki/EnglishLikeQueries

-=R

That’s interesting, but I have to question the code:payoff ratio. Most
ActiveRecord usage doesn’t have particularly diverse queries. These
queries can be easily and simply hidden away in single-line class
methods to give them meaningful mnemonics like “name_starts_with”.
Using class methods is transparent, trivial and not limited by the
features of your library.

English is also a very subjective language. What you’ve done is limited
users to a tiny, strict subset of English which is more or less the same
as doing something like where :title => [ :starts_with, ‘Something’ ].
That would require a lot less code and zero parsing.

But all of this replaces something you can do in one line anyway. Why
add all that complexity?

class Post < ActiveRecord::Base
def self.title_starts_with(s)
find :all, :conditions => [ “title LIKE ?”, “#{s}%” ]
end
end

Michael M. wrote:

Roger P. wrote:

Typically AR basically stinks to type in–it is way too wordy, and, for
lack of a better term, SQL like.
klass.find :all, :conditions => [“name LIKE ‘%?’”, ‘fred’]

I see that as a plus, not a minus. SQL is well-known, so if you need to
know how to do something there a many examples and resources.

This library condenses that to be a little more englishy, by allowing
hashed parameters that are parsed for meaning, ex:

klass.where ‘name starts with’ => ‘fred’

This reads better, is much faster, has support for regex, case
sensitivity, etc. without the pain of SQL.

Pain of SQL? Anyone writing code, and writing code that interacts with
a database, owes it to themselves (and their clients if they are coding
for $) to learn at least basic SQL and know where to look to learn more.
It’s a DSL meant for relational data. For the most part it is not
hard, and it gives you the power to write compact, efficient queries.

as doing something like where :title => [ :starts_with, ‘Something’ ].
That would require a lot less code and zero parsing.

Attempts to allow code that is “English-like” tend to come off as the
worst of both worlds. You lose the compactness and precision of code,
while never really getting the fluid expressiveness of natural language.
It tends to look and read as clunky.

I’d much rather have code that reads like Ruby but allows for raw SQL
when needed (Sequel, as a prime example, or Og), rather then code that
doesn’t quite read as code, and doesn’t quite read as English either.

And if you’re going to write DB apps, then geek up and just learn the
SQL.


James B.

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That’s interesting, but I have to question the code:payoff ratio. Most
ActiveRecord usage doesn’t have particularly diverse queries. These
queries can be easily and simply hidden away in single-line class
methods to give them meaningful mnemonics like “name_starts_with”.
Using class methods is transparent, trivial and not limited by the
features of your library.

Interesting. You can also use named scopes to accomplish something
similar albeit a more hard coded approach.

English is also a very subjective language. What you’ve done is limited
users to a tiny, strict subset of English which is more or less the same
as doing something like where :title => [ :starts_with, ‘Something’ ].
That would require a lot less code and zero parsing.

I like what you described. Basically I like anything that avoids the
tedious :conditions => [] and that reads well, so…sure.

But all of this replaces something you can do in one line anyway. Why
add all that complexity?

class Post < ActiveRecord::Base
def self.title_starts_with(s)
find :all, :conditions => [ “title LIKE ?”, “#{s}%” ]
end
end

Yeah named scopes are another way of doing it, as well as hard coded
functions like this. However, using english_like_queries you never have
to build those methods, or new ones when you find that what you have
isn’t exactly right. It works in conjunction with named scopes,
too–i.e.

Post.enabled.where ‘name starts with’ => ‘fred’

What I really love is that you can use it on existing AR sets, a la

user = User.find :first
users.posts.where 'date_created < ’ => Time.now.yesterday

Somehow I find it quite useful–it is faster and [for me] more readable.
YMMV.

-=R

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