Cleaner way to build a "one or the other" validation?


#1

I have an object called dealer. Dealer has two fields dealer_number
and sub_dealer_number. It must have 1 OR the other… but not both.
To validate this I have:

class Dealer < ActiveRecord::Base
validate :dealer_id?

private
def dealer_id?
if number.blank? && sub_number.blank?
errors.add_to_base(“You must specify either a Dealer Number OR a
Sub Dealer Number.”)
elsif (number.length > 0) && (sub_number.length > 0)
errors.add_to_base(“You must specify either a Dealer Number OR
a Sub Dealer Number.”)
end
end
end

This looks really messy to me. Is there a better way? Thank you for
your thoughts.


#2

On 21 Oct 2008, at 12:58, gnunix wrote:

I have an object called dealer. Dealer has two fields dealer_number
and sub_dealer_number. It must have 1 OR the other… but not both.
To validate this I have:

Use the Xor operator ( ^ ) ?

Fred


#3

How about:

def validate_dealer_id
if number.blank? then
errors.add_to_base(“You must specify either a Dealer Number OR a Sub
Dealer Number.”) if subnumber.blank?
else
erros.add_to_base(“A dealer can’t have both a dealer number AND a
sub dealer number”) unless subnumber.blank?
end
end

?

Extra bonus kibbitzing:

  • Would it make things any easier to store both those
    numbers in a single field, and keep track of whether
    a given dealer is a dealer or a sub in a separate ‘dealer_type’
    field?
  • FWIW–the ruby convention is that methods whose names
    end in a ? return a boolean.

Cheers,

-Roy


#4

Frederick C. wrote:

Use the Xor operator ( ^ ) ?

Fred

Sexy. Thanks.

I changed above to:

class Dealer < ActiveRecord::Base
validate :dealer_id?

private
def dealer_id?
if !(number.blank? ^ sub_number.blank?)
errors.add_to_base(“You must specify either a Dealer Number OR a
Sub Dealer Number.”)
end
end
end

Makes me feel less dirty.


#5

Michael K. wrote:

I don’t think that your above example is any cleaner then my original
solution. However, your bonus kibbitzing (lol) I think is a really good
thought. I am going to implement this logic on a later iteration.
Thanks for this.

Hi Michael,

For future reference, I needed to do something similar a few months ago
and ended up creating a custom validation. I wrote about it if you want
to look into it:

http://per-snicket-y.blogspot.com/2008/04/custom-validations-in-rails-202.html

Peace.


#6

Roy P. wrote:

How about:

def validate_dealer_id
if number.blank? then
errors.add_to_base(“You must specify either a Dealer Number OR a Sub
Dealer Number.”) if subnumber.blank?
else
erros.add_to_base(“A dealer can’t have both a dealer number AND a
sub dealer number”) unless subnumber.blank?
end
end

?

Extra bonus kibbitzing:

  • Would it make things any easier to store both those
    numbers in a single field, and keep track of whether
    a given dealer is a dealer or a sub in a separate ‘dealer_type’
    field?
  • FWIW–the ruby convention is that methods whose names
    end in a ? return a boolean.

Cheers,

-Roy

I don’t think that your above example is any cleaner then my original
solution. However, your bonus kibbitzing (lol) I think is a really good
thought. I am going to implement this logic on a later iteration.
Thanks for this.