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Ruby Facets



Ruby Facets is the premiere collection of general purpose method extensions and standard additions for the Ruby programming language.

Facets houses the largest single collection of methods available for extending the core capabilities of Ruby's built-in classes and modules. This collection of extension methods are unique by virtue of their atomicity. The methods are stored in individual files so that each can be required independently. This gives developers the potential for much finer control over which extra methods to bring into their code.

In addition Facets provides a collection of extensions to Ruby standard library plus a small collection of add-on classes and modules. Together these libraries constitute an reliable source of reusable components, suitable to a wide variety of usecases.



Facets has special documentation needs due to it's extensive bredth. The documentation generated when installing via RubyGems, or the YARD docs provided by rubydoc.info can be somewhat unweildly because it combines all of Facets in one large set. When using these resources, it is important to remain aware of the source location of particular methods.

For better organized online documentation, generated to separate core extensions from standard libraries, see the Learn Facets page on the website for links to available documentation.



The easiest way to install is via RubyGems.

$ gem install facets


Facets can be installed the old-fashioned way using Ruby Setup (rubyworks.github.com/setup). Download and unpack the .tar.gz package and run setup.rb, like so:

$ tar -xvzf facets-2.x.x.tar.gz
$ cd facets-2.x.x
$ sudo setup.rb

Facets 2.8+ requires Ruby 1.8.7 or higher.


Facets holds to the notion that the more we can reasonably integrate into a common foundation, directed toward general needs, the better that foundation will be able to serve the community. There are a number of advantages here:

  • Better Code-reuse

  • Collaborative Improvements

  • Greater Name Consistency

  • One-stop Shop and Installation


CORE Library

At the heart of Ruby Facets is the CORE extensions library. CORE provides a sizable collection of generally useful methods, along with a few supporting classes, that extend the functionality of Ruby's core classes and modules.

With the exception of a few uncommon extensions, CORE contains anything that will load automatically when issuing:

require 'facets'

This loads all the CORE functionality at once. If you plan to use more then a handful of Facets core methods it is recommended that you require the library in this way. However, you can also “cherry pick” the CORE library as you prefer. And for uncommon extensions this must be done. The general require statement for a core extension library is:

require 'facets/<class|module>/<method>'

For example:

require 'facets/time/stamp'

Most “atoms” contain only one method, but exceptions occur when methods are closely tied together.

You can load per-class or per-module groups of core methods by requiring the class or module by name. For example“

require 'facets/time'

Will require all the core Time method extensions.

Note that some methods that were part of CORE in 1.8 and earlier are now part of MORE libraries. A good example is 'random.rb'. There were separated because they had more specialized use cases, where as CORE extensions are intended as general purpose.

Method File Names

Operator method redirect files are stored using English names. For instance `Proc#*` is `proc/op_mul`.

For reference, here is the chart.

+@   => op_plus
-@   => op_minus
+    => op_add
-    => op_sub
**   => op_pow
*    => op_mul
/    => op_div
%    => op_mod
~    => op_tilde
<=>  => op_cmp
<<   => op_lshift
>>   => op_rshift
<    => op_lt
>    => op_gt
===  => op_case
==   => op_equal
=~   => op_apply
<=   => op_lt_eq
>=   => op_gt_eq
|    => op_or
&    => op_and
^    => op_xor
[]=  => op_store
[]   => op_fetch

Facets simply takes the '*' and translates it into a string acceptable to all file systems. Also, if a method ends in '=', '?' or '!' it is simply removed.

MORE Library (aka Standard Library)

On top of the extensive CORE library, Facets provides extensions for Ruby's standard library, as well as very small collection of additional modules and classes to supplement it.

Use this library like you would any other 3rd party library. The only difference between Facet's Standard library and other libraries is the lack of any enclosing @Facets::@ namespace. This is becuase the libraries provided by Facets are fairly low-level and very general purpose.

When using Facets extended versions of Ruby's standard libraries, the libraries have to loaded manually, of course. However you do not need to load Ruby's library first, as the Facets' library will do that automatically.

For example, normally one load Ruby's OpenStruct class via:

require 'ostruct'

To load 'ostruct.rb' plus Facets extensions for it simply use:

require 'facets/ostruct'

For details pertaining to the functionality of each feature, please see the API documentation.


This project thrives on contribution!

If you have any extension methods, classes or modules that you think have very general applicability and would like to see them included in this project, don't hesitiate to submit. Also, if you have better versions of any thing already included or simply have a patch, they are more than welcome. We want Ruby Facets to be of the highest quality.


Facets uses the Lemon testing framework to handle unit testing. And uses QED specifications to provide a higher level of testing along wth documentation. It is most important to provide Lemon tests when contributing, but feel free to provide QED specs if you are feeling particularly verbose!

Facets uses Detroit and Fire build tools. Detroit is a life-cycle tool and Fire is something of a cross between Rake and Watchr. The build scripts (the Assembly and the `Rulefile` respectively), sometimes used other tools such as `mast` and `vclog`.


This collection was put together by, and largely written by Trans. He can be reached via email at transfire at gmail.com.

Some parts of this collection were written and/or inspired by other persons. Fortunately nearly all were copyrighted under the same open license, the Ruby License, or the more liberal BSD and MIT licenses. In the one or two exceptions I have included the copyright notice with the source code. Any code file not specifically labeled othewise shall fall under the Ruby License.

In all cases, I have made every effort to give credit where credit is due. You will find these acknowledgments embedded in the source code. You can see them in “CREDIT:” and/or “@author” lines.

Also see the Contibutors page on the Wiki for a list of all contributing Rubyists. If anyone is missing from the list, please let me know and I will correct right away. Thanks.


The collection PER COLLECTION is licensed as follows:

Ruby Facets
Copyright (c) 2004,2010 Rubyworks

Distributed under the terms of the Ruby license.

The Ruby license is a dual license that also provides for use of the GPL. Complete texts of both licenses accompany this document (see LICENSE).

Acknowledgments and Copyrights for particular snippets of borrowed code are given in their respective source. All licenses are either compatible with the Ruby license or the original author has given permission for inclusion of their code under such license.


Ruby Facets, Copyright ©2005,2011 Rubyworks

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