Spandex is a simple content engine for Ruby, made chiefly from orangutan fur
Spandex manages a bucket of text files written in your favorite markup (Markdown, Textile, or even Haml). You mark those files up with metadata (like date and tags), and Spandex gives you access to them. This is perfect for building a simple git-based blog or content site.
It's super freaking easy
Make a directory called "content".
In that directory, create a file called
Title: I have an affinity for goats Date: 2011/9/25 Tags: gerrymandering, hyperbolic geometry No, really goats are *awesome*.
Then use Spandex to do the work:
spandex = Spandex.new(File.expand_path('content', File.dirname(__FILE__)) page = spandex.get('things') page.title #=> "I have an affinity for goats" page.tags #=> ["gerrymandering", "hyperbolic geometry"] page.body #=> <p>No, really goats are <em>awesome</em>.</p>\n spandex.all_pages #=> all pages under content spandex.all_articles #=> all pages with dates (e.g. blog posts) spandex.tags #=> ["gerrymandering", "hyperbolic geometry"] spandex.atom_feed #=> a bunch of XML, only finds posts with dates spandex.find_articles(:tag => "gerrymandering")
The spandex object caches the pages and does all of the right last-mod-time checking. Your application should just keep the object around.
Blog engines are great, and there are, like, three thousand of them. Sometimes, though, you just want to build a website with the tools you know. Spandex lets you do that while taking care of all the grody work of keeping track of posts. A barebones example of a Spandex-based blog is the tinyblogofdoom.
But wait! There's more! Spandex can also implement the core functionality for a blog engine or CMS. Spandex brings the post rendering and you bring the themes, UI chrome, and plugins.
Some more cool stuff
Paths can be deep:
page = spandex.get('subfolder/deeper/things')
You can pass options through to Tilt at initialization:
spandex = Spandex.new(path, :fenced_code_blocks => true) #special option for Redcarpet
The content is just Tilt
The markup is processed using Tilt. That means it can read a lot of different markup formats, and gives you access to all of Tilt's configuration options. You can change what extensions get bound to what template engines, and that sort of thing
You can also customize rendering by customizing Tilt. Here's how you might customize Spandex to hightlight code with Pygments:
require 'redcarpet' require 'pygments' class Syntactical < Redcarpet::Render::HTML include Pygments def block_code(code, language) highlight code, :lexer => lexer_name_for(:lexer => language) end end class SyntacticalTemplate < Tilt::RedcarpetTemplate::Redcarpet2 def generate_renderer Syntactical end end Tilt::register SyntacticalTemplate, 'some_file_extension'