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1 = Searchlogic
2
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3 Searchlogic makes using ActiveRecord named scopes easier and less repetitive. It helps keep your code DRY, clean, and simple.
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4
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5 == Helpful links
6
7 * <b>Documentation:</b> http://rdoc.info/projects/binarylogic/searchlogic
8 * <b>Repository:</b> http://github.com/binarylogic/searchlogic/tree/master
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9 * <b>Issues:</b> http://github.com/binarylogic/searchlogic/issues
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10 * <b>Google group:</b> http://groups.google.com/group/searchlogic
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11 * <b>Railscast:</b> http://railscasts.com/episodes/176-searchlogic
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12
13 <b>Before contacting me directly, please read:</b>
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14
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15 If you find a bug or a problem please post it in the issues section. If you need help with something, please use google groups. I check both regularly and get emails when anything happens, so that is the best place to get help. This also benefits other people in the future with the same questions / problems. Thank you.
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16
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17 == Install & use
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18
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19 Install the gem from rubyforge:
20
21 sudo gem install searchlogic
22
23 Or from github:
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24
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25 sudo gem install binarylogic-searchlogic
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26
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27 Now just include it in your project and you are ready to go.
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28
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29 You can also install this as a plugin:
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30
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31 script/plugin install git://github.com/binarylogic/searchlogic.git
32
33 See below for usage examples.
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34
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35 == Search using conditions on columns
36
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37 Instead of explaining what Searchlogic can do, let me show you. Let's start at the top:
38
39 # We have the following model
40 User(id: integer, created_at: datetime, username: string, age: integer)
41
42 # Searchlogic gives you a bunch of named scopes for free:
43 User.username_equals("bjohnson")
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44 User.username_equals(["bjohnson", "thunt"])
45 User.username_equals("a".."b")
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46 User.username_does_not_equal("bjohnson")
47 User.username_begins_with("bjohnson")
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48 User.username_not_begin_with("bjohnson")
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49 User.username_like("bjohnson")
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50 User.username_not_like("bjohnson")
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51 User.username_ends_with("bjohnson")
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52 User.username_not_end_with("bjohnson")
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53 User.age_greater_than(20)
54 User.age_greater_than_or_equal_to(20)
55 User.age_less_than(20)
56 User.age_less_than_or_equal_to(20)
57 User.username_null
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58 User.username_not_null
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59 User.username_blank
60
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61 Any named scope Searchlogic creates is dynamic and created via method_missing. Meaning it will only create what you need. Also, keep in mind, these are just named scopes, you can chain them, call methods off of them, etc:
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62
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63 scope = User.username_like("bjohnson").age_greater_than(20).id_less_than(55)
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64 scope.all
65 scope.first
66 scope.count
67 # etc...
68
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69 For a complete list of conditions please see the constants in Searchlogic::NamedScopes::Conditions.
70
71 == Use condition aliases
72
73 Typing out 'greater_than_or_equal_to' is not fun. Instead Searchlogic provides various aliases for the conditions. For a complete list please see Searchlogic::NamedScopes::Conditions. But they are pretty straightforward:
74
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75 User.username_is(10) # equals
76 User.username_eq(10) # equals
77 User.id_lt(10) # less than
78 User.id_lte(10) # less than or equal to
79 User.id_gt(10) # greater than
80 User.id_gte(10) # greater than or equal to
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81 # etc...
82
83 == Search using scopes in associated classes
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84
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85 This is my favorite part of Searchlogic. You can dynamically call scopes on associated classes and Searchlogic will take care of creating the necessary joins for you. This is REALY nice for keeping your code DRY. The best way to explain this is to show you:
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86
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87 === Searchlogic provided scopes
88
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89 Let's take some basic scopes that Searchlogic provides for every model:
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90
91 # We have the following relationships
92 User.has_many :orders
93 Order.has_many :line_items
94 LineItem
95
96 # Set conditions on association columns
97 User.orders_total_greater_than(20)
98 User.orders_line_items_price_greater_than(20)
99
100 # Order by association columns
101 User.ascend_by_order_total
102 User.descend_by_orders_line_items_price
103
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104 This is recursive, you can travel through your associations simply by typing it in the name of the method. Again these are just named scopes. You can chain them together, call methods off of them, etc.
105
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106 === Custom associated scopes
107
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108 Also, these conditions aren't limited to the scopes Searchlogic provides. You can use your own scopes. Like this:
109
110 LineItem.named_scope :expensive, :conditions => "line_items.price > 500"
111
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112 User.orders_line_items_expensive
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113
114 As I stated above, Searchlogic will take care of creating the necessary joins for you. This is REALLY nice when trying to keep your code DRY, because if you wanted to use a scope like this in your User model you would have to copy over the conditions. Now you have 2 named scopes that are essentially doing the same thing. Why do that when you can dynamically access that scope using this feature?
115
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116 === Uses :joins not :include
117
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118 Another thing to note is that the joins created by Searchlogic do NOT use the :include option, making them <em>much</em> faster. Instead they leverage the :joins option, which is great for performance. To prove my point here is a quick benchmark from an application I am working on:
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119
120 Benchmark.bm do |x|
121 x.report { 10.times { Event.tickets_id_gt(10).all(:include => :tickets) } }
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122 x.report { 10.times { Event.tickets_id_gt(10).all } }
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123 end
124 user system total real
125 10.120000 0.170000 10.290000 ( 12.625521)
126 2.630000 0.050000 2.680000 ( 3.313754)
127
128 If you want to use the :include option, just specify it:
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129
130 User.orders_line_items_price_greater_than(20).all(:include => {:orders => :line_items})
131
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132 Obviously, only do this if you want to actually use the included objects. Including objects into a query can be helpful with performance, especially when solving an N+1 query problem.
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133
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134 == Order your search
135
136 Just like the various conditions, Searchlogic gives you some very basic scopes for ordering your data:
137
138 User.ascend_by_id
139 User.descend_by_id
140 User.ascend_by_orders_line_items_price
141 # etc...
142
143 == Use any or all
144
145 Every condition you've seen in this readme also has 2 related conditions that you can use. Example:
146
147 User.username_like_any("bjohnson", "thunt") # will return any users that have either of the strings in their username
148 User.username_like_all("bjohnson", "thunt") # will return any users that have all of the strings in their username
149 User.username_like_any(["bjohnson", "thunt"]) # also accepts an array
150
151 This is great for checkbox filters, etc. Where you can pass an array right from your form to this condition.
152
153 == Combine scopes with 'OR'
154
155 In the same fashion that Searchlogic provides a tool for accessing scopes in associated classes, it also provides a tool for combining scopes with 'OR'. As we all know, when scopes are combined they are joined with 'AND', but sometimes you need to combine scopes with 'OR'. Searchlogic solves this problem:
156
157 User.username_or_first_name_like("ben")
158 => "username LIKE '%ben%' OR first_name like'%ben%'"
159
160 User.id_or_age_lt_or_username_or_first_name_begins_with(10)
161 => "id < 10 OR age < 10 OR username LIKE 'ben%' OR first_name like'ben%'"
162
163 Notice you don't have to specify the explicit condition (like, gt, lt, begins with, etc.). You just need to eventually specify it. If you specify a column it will just use the next condition specified. So instead of:
164
165 User.username_like_or_first_name_like("ben")
166
167 You can do:
168
169 User.username_or_first_name_like("ben")
170
171 Again, these just map to named scopes. Use Searchlogic's dynamic scopes, use scopes on associations, use your own custom scopes. As long as it maps to a named scope it will join the conditions with 'OR'. There are no limitations.
172
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173 == Create scope procedures
174
175 Sometimes you notice a pattern in your application where you are constantly combining certain named scopes. You want to keep the flexibility of being able to mix and match small named scopes, while at the same time being able to call a single scope for a common task. User searchlogic's scpe procedure:
176
177 User.scope_procedure :awesome, lambda { first_name_begins_with("ben").last_name_begins_with("johnson").website_equals("binarylogic.com") }
178
179 All that this is doing is creating a class level method, but what is nice about this method is that is more inline with your other named scopes. It also tells searchlogic that this method is 'safe' to use when using the search method. Ex:
180
181 User.search(:awesome => true)
182
183 Otherwise searchlogic will ignore the 'awesome' condition because there is no way to tell that its a valid scope. This is a security measure to keep users from passing in a scope with a named like 'destroy_all'.
184
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185 == Make searching and ordering data in your application trivial
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186
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187 The above is great, but what about tying all of this in with a search form in your application? What would be really nice is if we could use an object that represented a single search. Like this...
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188
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189 search = User.search(:username_like => "bjohnson", :age_less_than => 20)
190 search.all
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191
192 The above is equivalent to:
193
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194 User.username_like("bjohnson").age_less_than(20).all
195
196 You can set, read, and chain conditions off of your search too:
197
198 search.username_like => "bjohnson"
199 search.age_gt = 2 => 2
200 search.id_gt(10).email_begins_with("bjohnson") => <#Searchlogic::Search...>
201 search.all => An array of users
202 search.count => integer
203 # .. etc
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204
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205 So let's start with the controller...
206
207 === Your controller
208
209 The search class just chains named scopes together for you. What's so great about that? It keeps your controllers extremely simple:
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210
211 class UsersController < ApplicationController
212 def index
213 @search = User.search(params[:search])
214 @users = @search.all
215 end
216 end
217
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218 It doesn't get any simpler than that.
219
220 === Your form
221
222 Adding a search condition is as simple as adding a condition to your form. Remember all of those named scopes above? Just create fields with the same names:
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223
224 - form_for @search do |f|
225 = f.text_field :username_like
226 = f.select :age_greater_than, (0..100)
227 = f.text_field :orders_total_greater_than
228 = f.submit
229
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230 When a Searchlogic::Search object is passed to form_for it will add a hidden field for the "order" condition, to preserve the order of the data.
231
232 === Additional helpers
233
234 There really isn't a big need for helpers in searchlogic, other than helping you order data. If you want to order your search with a link, just specify the name of the column. Ex:
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235
236 = order @search, :by => :age
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237 = order @search, :by => :created_at, :as => "Created date"
238
239 The first one will create a link that alternates between calling "ascend_by_age" and "descend_by_age". If you wanted to order your data by more than just a column, create your own named scopes: "ascend_by_*" and "descend_by_*". The "order" helper is a very straight forward helper, checkout the docs for some of the options.
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240
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241 <b>This helper is just a convenience method. It's extremely simple and there is nothing wrong with creating your own. If it doesn't do what you want, copy the code, modify it, and create your own. You could even fork the project, modify it there, and use your own gem.</b>
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242
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243 == Use your existing named scopes
244
245 This is one of the big differences between Searchlogic v1 and v2. What about your existing named scopes? Let's say you have this:
246
247 User.named_scope :four_year_olds, :conditions => {:age => 4}
248
249 Again, these are all just named scopes, use it in the same way:
250
251 User.search(:four_year_olds => true, :username_like => "bjohnson")
252
253 Notice we pass true as the value. If a named scope does not accept any parameters (arity == 0) you can simply pass it true or false. If you pass false, the named scope will be ignored. If your named scope accepts a parameter, the value will be passed right to the named scope regardless of the value.
254
255 Now just throw it in your form:
256
257 - form_for @search do |f|
258 = f.text_field :username_like
259 = f.check_box :four_year_olds
260 = f.submit
261
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262 This really allows Searchlogic to extend beyond what it provides internally. If Searchlogic doesn't provide a named scope for that crazy edge case that you need, just create your own named scope and use it. The sky is the limit.
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263
264 == Pagination (leverage will_paginate)
265
266 Instead of recreating the wheel with pagination, Searchlogic works great with will_paginate. All that Searchlogic is doing is creating named scopes, and will_paginate works great with named scopes:
267
268 User.username_like("bjohnson").age_less_than(20).paginate(:page => params[:page])
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269 User.search(:username_like => "bjohnson", :age_less_than => 20).paginate(:page => params[:page])
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270
271 If you don't like will_paginate, use another solution, or roll your own. Pagination really has nothing to do with searching, and the main goal for Searchlogic v2 was to keep it lean and simple. No reason to recreate the wheel and bloat the library.
272
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273 == Conflicts with other gems
274
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275 You will notice searchlogic wants to create a method called "search". So do other libraries like thinking-sphinx, etc. So searchlogic has a no conflict resolution. If the "search" method is already taken the method will be called "searchlogic" instead. So instead of
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276
277 User.search
278
279 You would do:
280
281 User.searchlogic
282
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283 == Under the hood
284
285 Before I use a library in my application I like to glance at the source and try to at least understand the basics of how it works. If you are like me, a nice little explanation from the author is always helpful:
286
287 Searchlogic utilizes method_missing to create all of these named scopes. When it hits method_missing it creates a named scope to ensure it will never hit method missing for that named scope again. Sort of a caching mechanism. It works in the same fashion as ActiveRecord's "find_by_*" methods. This way only the named scopes you need are created and nothing more.
288
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289 The search object is just a proxy to your model that only delegates calls that map to named scopes and nothing more. This is obviously done for security reasons. It also helps make form integration easier, by type casting values, and playing nice with form_for. This class is pretty simple as well.
290
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291 That's about it, the named scope options are pretty bare bones and created just like you would manually.
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292
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293 == Credit
294
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295 Thanks a lot to {Tyler Hunt}[http://github.com/tylerhunt] for helping plan, design, and start the project. He was a big help.
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296
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297 == Copyright
298
299 Copyright (c) 2009 {Ben Johnson of Binary Logic}[http://www.binarylogic.com], released under the MIT license
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