Skip to content
This repository

A category to extend Cocoa's NSDate class with some convenience functions.

branch: master
README.textile

NSDate (Helper)

This is a category for the NSDate class that provides some convenience methods for working with NSDate objects and displaying formatted and relative strings.

More information can be found at my initial blog post.

Anyone is welcome to use it for anything, and to change it as they see fit. If you’d like to contribute back any changes (woot!), please fork and send a pull request!

Usage

Full documentation is now up on the Github wiki for this project. It’s a lot better than this kinda rambling overview here.

Two convenience methods make it easy for you to display some relative date information. stringForDisplayFromDate gives you the kind of relative format you see in the Notes listing on the iPhone:


  NSString *displayString = [NSDate stringForDisplayFromDate:date];

This produces the following kinds of output:

  • ‘3:42 AM’ – if the date is after midnight today
  • ‘Tuesday’ – if the date is within the last seven days
  • ‘Mar 1’ – if the date is within the current calendar year
  • ‘Mar 1, 2008’ – else ;-)

  NSString *displayString = [NSDate stringForDisplayFromDate:date prefixed:YES];

This produces the same as above, but prefixed with ‘at’ or ‘on’ depending on the appropriate English syntax.

Another set of methods provide days-ago information:


  NSDate *date = [NSDate date];
  [date daysAgo]; // provides an NSComponent-based NSUInteger describing days ago.
  [date daysAgoAgainstMidnight]; // better version of daysAgo, works off midnight (hat-tip: "sburlot":http://github.com/sburlot)
  [date stringDaysAgo]; // 'Today', 'Yesterday', or 'N days ago'.

Tired of creating and releasing date formatters? Missing things like to_s(:db)? Me, too. NSDate (Helper) has some static methods to make going back and forth between strings and dates a little less painful, and particularly easier when working with database timestamps (a la SQLite):


  NSDate *date = [NSDate dateFromString:@"2009-03-01 12:15:23"];
  NSString *dbDateString = [NSDate stringFromDate:date]; // returns '2009-03-01 12:15:23'

Who needs NSDateFormatter?


  NSString *otherDateString = [NSDate stringFromDate:date withFormat:@"EEEE"]; // use any format you like

Installation

To use it in your Cocoa project, import the header and implementation files, and then add the header to your project’s _prefix.pch file so that it’s available across your project:


#ifdef __OBJC__
    #import <Foundation/Foundation.h>
    #import <UIKit/UIKit.h>
    #import "NSDate+Helper.h"
#endif

License

Copyright © 2009, 2010, ZETETIC LLC
All rights reserved.

Redistribution and use in source and binary forms, with or without
modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions are met:

  • Redistributions of source code must retain the above copyright
    notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer.
  • Redistributions in binary form must reproduce the above copyright
    notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer in the
    documentation and/or other materials provided with the distribution.
  • Neither the name of the ZETETIC LLC nor the
    names of its contributors may be used to endorse or promote products
    derived from this software without specific prior written permission.

THIS SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED BY ZETETIC LLC ‘’AS IS’’ AND ANY
EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTIES, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, THE IMPLIED
WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE ARE
DISCLAIMED. IN NO EVENT SHALL ZETETIC LLC BE LIABLE FOR ANY
DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES
(INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, PROCUREMENT OF SUBSTITUTE GOODS OR SERVICES;
LOSS OF USE, DATA, OR PROFITS; OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTION) HOWEVER CAUSED AND
ON ANY THEORY OF LIABILITY, WHETHER IN CONTRACT, STRICT LIABILITY, OR TORT
(INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE OR OTHERWISE) ARISING IN ANY WAY OUT OF THE USE OF THIS
SOFTWARE, EVEN IF ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGE.

Something went wrong with that request. Please try again.