Rookie with text editing



This might be a pretty basic question not even totally rails specific,
but how do I control text editing using ruby on rails?

For instance, I am using the ruby forum as I type this and am typing into a
textarea tag. I have this in my rails app and I want to know how to
save the formatting - such as when I hit returns to go to a new line
when I write.

When I do it with the rails site I am working on, it ignores the returns
etc. and jumbles it all together.




Just for debugging, output the text you are getting within a set of

 tags.  Web browsers are designed to ignore whitespace, and

only follow formatting specified to them in markup rules.

For a VERY simple way of at least getting the spacing right, either on
save or when display the string, replace all instances of ‘\n’ with


Example (in your view):
<%= ‘\n’, ‘
’ %>




When people enter text in a text area, they expect the result to look
like what they entered with proper line breaks, and indentations.


  • With plain text display + gsub(/\n/,’
    ’), you loose the
    indentation, but the line is correctly wrapped if it’s too long.
  • With
    , line breaks and indentations work fine, but there is no
    wrapping (1 paragraph --> 1 very long flat line).
    (I think CSS3 will bring wrapping to

The simplest solution I’ve found is an HTML editor.


In a snap - 1 line - you tell it to HTML-empower all your textAreas, or
only the one with a given class, and voilà .
Note: I started using it yesterday so I can’t tell you much about its
limitations yet.