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Ponder

Description

Ponder (Stibbons) is a Domain Specific Language for writing IRC Bots using the EventMachine library.

Getting started

Installation

$ sudo gem install ponder

Configuring the Bot (Thaum!)

require 'rubygems'
require 'ponder'

@ponder = Ponder::Thaum.new do |thaum|
  thaum.nick   = 'Ponder'
  thaum.server = 'irc.freenode.net'
  thaum.port   = 6667
end

Starting the Thaum

@ponder.connect

Event Handling

This naked Thaum will connect to the server and answer PING requests (and VERSION and TIME). If you want the Thaum to join a channel when it's connected, use the following:

@ponder.on :connect do
  @ponder.join '#mended_drum'
end

If you want the Thaum to answer on specific channel messages, register this Event Handler:

@ponder.on :channel, /ponder/ do |event_data|
  @ponder.message event_data[:channel], 'Heard my name!'
end

Now, if an incoming channel message contains the word "ponder", the Thaum will send the message "Heard my name!" to that specific channel. See the Advanced Event Handling chapter for more details on how to register Event Handlers and the event_data hash. For more examples, have a look at the examples directory.

Advanced Configuration

Besides the configuration for nick, server and port as shown in the Getting Started chapter, there are some more preferences Ponder accepts. All of them:

  • server

    The server variable describes the server the Thaum shall connect to. It defaults to 'localhost'.

  • port

    port describes the port that is used for the connection. It defaults to 6667.

  • nick

    nick describes the nick the Thaum will try to register when connecting to the server. It will not be updated if the Thaum changes its nick. It defaults to 'Ponder'.

  • username

    username is used for describing the username. It defaults to 'Ponder'.

  • real_name

    real_name is used for describing the real name. It defaults to 'Ponder'.

  • verbose

    If verbose is set to true, all incoming and outgoing traffic will be put to the console. Plus exceptions raised in Callbacks (errors). It defaults to true.

  • logging

    If logging is set to true, all incoming and outgoing traffic and exceptions will be logged to logs/log.log.

    You can also define your own logger, using thaum.logger = @my_cool_logger or thaum.logger = Logger.new(...). Ponder itself just uses the #info, #error and #close method on the logger.

    You can access the logger instance via @ponder.logger, so you could do: @ponder.logger.info('I did this and that right now').

    It defaults to false.

  • reconnect

    If reconnect is set to true, the Thaum will try to reconnect after being disconnected from the server (netsplit, ...). It will not try to reconnect if you call quit on the Thaum. It defaults to true.

  • reconnect_interval

    If reconnect is set to true, reconnect_interval describes the time in seconds, which the Thaum will wait before trying to reconnect. It defaults to 30.

For further information, have a look at the examples.

Advanced Event Handling

A Thaum can react on several events, so here is a list of handlers that can be used as argument in the on method:

  • join

    The join handler reacts, if an user joins a channel in which the Thaum is in. Example:

    @ponder.on :join do
      # ...
    end
    

    If using a block variable, you have access to a hash with detailed information about the event. Example:

    @ponder.on :join do |event_data|
      @ponder.message event_data[:channel], "Hello #{event_data[:nick]}! Welcome to #{event_data[:channel]}."
    end
    

    Which will greet a joined user with a channel message.

    The hash contains data for the keys :nick, :user, :host and :channel.

  • part

    Similar to the join handler but reacts on parting users. The block variable hash contains data for the keys :nick, :user, :host, :channel and :message. The value for :message is the message the parting user leaves.

  • quit

    The quit handler reacts, if an user quits from the server (and the Thaum can see it in a channel). The block variable hash contains data for the keys :nick, :user, :host and :message.

  • channel

    If an user sends a message to a channel, you can react with the channel handler. Example (from above):

    @ponder.on :channel, /ponder/ do |event_data|
      @ponder.message event_data[:channel], 'Heard my name!'
    end
    

    The block variable hash contains data for the keys :nick, :user, :host, :channel and :message.

  • query

    The query handler is like the channel handler, but for queries. Same keys in the data hash but no :channel.

  • nickchange

    nickchange reacts on nickchanges. Data hash keys are :nick, :user, :host and :new_nick, where nick is the nick before renaming and new_nick the nick after renaming.

  • kick

    If an user is being kicked, the kick handler can handle that event. Data hash keys are: :nick, :user, :host, :channel, :victim and :reason.

  • topic

    topic is for reacting on topic changes. Data hash keys are: :nick, :user, :host, :channel and :topic, where :topic is the new topic. You can provide a Regexp to just react on specific patterns:

    @ponder.on :topic, /foo/ do |event_data|
      # ...
    end
    

    This will just work for topics that include the word "foo".

  • disconnect

    disconnect reacts on being disconnected from the server (netsplit, quit, ...). It does not react if you exit the program with ^C.

  • Raw numerics

    A Thaum can seperately react on events with raw numerics, too. So you could do:

    @ponder.on 301 do |event_data|
      # ...
    end
    

    The data hash will contain the :params key. The corresponding value is the complete traffic line that came in.

For all Event Handlers there is a :type key in the data hash (if the variable is specified). Its value gives the type of event, like :channel, :join or 301.

You can even share handler bodies between different events. So you are able to do something like this:

@ponder.on [:join, :part, :quit] do |event_data|
  # ...
end

or

@ponder.on [:channel, :query], /ponder/ do |event_data|
  @ponder.message((event_data[:channel] || event_data[:nick]), 'Yes?')
end

or

@ponder.on [:channel, :nickchange], /foo/ do |event_data|
  # ...
end

They are not really shared at all, Ponder will just copy the Callback, but it's comfortable.

Commanding the Thaum

Command the Thaum, very simple. Just call a method listed below on the Ponder object. I will keep this short, since I assume you're at least little experienced with IRC.

  • message(recipient, message)
  • notice(recipient, message)
  • mode(recipient, option)
  • kick(channel, user, reason = nil)
  • action(recipient, message)
  • topic(channel, topic)
  • join(channel, password = nil)
  • part(channel, message = nil)
  • quit(message = nil)
  • rename(nick)
  • away(message = nil)
  • back
  • invite(nick, channel)
  • ban(channel, address)

Last but not least some cool "give me something back" methods:

  • get_topic(channel)

    • Possible return values for get_topic are:

      • {:raw_numeric => 331, :message => 'No topic is set'} if no topic is set
      • {:raw_numeric => 332, :message => message} with message the topic message
      • {:raw_numeric => 403, :message => 'No such channel'} if there is no such channel
      • {:raw_numeric => 442, :message => "You're not on that channel"} if you cannot actually see the topic
      • false if the request times out (30 seconds)
  • channel_info(channel)

    • Possible return values:

      • If successful, a hash with keys:

        • :modes (letters)
        • :channel_limit (if channel limit is set)
        • :created_at (Time object of the time the channel was created)
      • false, if the request is not successful or times out (30 seconds)

  • whois(nick)

    • Possible return values:

      • If successful, a hash with keys:

        • :nick
        • :username
        • :host
        • :real_name
        • :server (a hash with the keys :address and :name)
        • :channels (a hash like {'#foo' => '@', '#bar' => nil} where the values are user privileges)
        • :registered (true, if registered, else nil)
      • If not successful

        • false
      • If times out (30 seconds)

        • nil

    Example:

    # Ponder, kick an user (and check if I'm allowed to command you)!
    @ponder.on :channel, /^!kick \S+$/ do |event_data|
      user_data = @ponder.whois(event_data[:nick])
      if user_data[:registered] && (user_data[:channels][event_data[:channel]] == '@')
        user_to_kick = event_data[:message].split(' ')[1]
        @ponder.kick event_data[:channel], user_to_kick, 'GO!'
      end
    end
    

Filters

Before Filters

You can have Before Filters! They are called before each event handling process and can - among other things - manipulate the event_data hash. If a Before Filter returns false, no further filters (no After Filters either) are called and the event handling process won't fire up. Example:

@ponder.before_filter(:channel, /foo/) do
  # ...
end

This Before Filter will be called, if a channel message with the word "foo" gets in. You can use all other event types (like :query, :kick, ...) as well. Also possible is an array notation like before_filter([:query, :channel], /foo/) .... If you want the filter to work an all event types, you can simply use :all. Filters will be called in defining order; first defined, first called. Event specific filters are called before :all filters.

You could use it for authentication/authorization. Example:

@ponder.before_filter :channel, // do |event_data|
  if is_an_admin?(event_data[:nick])
    event_data[:authorized_request] = true
  else
    event_data[:authorized_request] = false
  end
end

Now, one can check for event_data[:authorized_request] in a callback.

After Filters

After Filters work the same way as Before Filters do, just after the actual event handling process. An After Filter does not hinder later After Filters to fire up if it returns false. Example:

@ponder.after_filter(:all, //) do
  # ...
end

Timers

If you need something in an event handling process to be time-displaced, you should not use sleep. I recommend using the comfortable timer methods EventMachine provides. A one shot timer looks like this:

EventMachine::Timer.new(10) do
  # code to be run after 10 seconds
end

If you want the timer to be canceled before starting, you can do it like this:

timer = EventMachine::Timer.new(10) do
  # code to be run after 10 seconds
end

# ...

timer.cancel

You can even have periodic timers which will fire up every n seconds:

EventMachine::PeriodicTimer.new(10) do
  # code to be run every 10 seconds
end

A periodic timer can be canceled just like the other one.

Formatting

You can format your messages with colors, make it bold, italic or underlined. All of those formatting constants are availabe through Ponder::Formatting.

Colors

For coloring text you first set the color code with Ponder::Formatting::COLOR_CODE followed by a color followed by the text. For ending the colored text, set the uncolor code with Ponder::Formatting::UNCOLOR.

Availabe colors are white, black, blue, green, red, brown, purple, orange, yellow, lime, teal, cyan, royal, pink, gray and silver. You can set one with the Ponder::Formatting::COLORS hash. Example:

"This will be #{Ponder::Formatting::COLOR_CODE}#{Ponder::Formatting::COLORS[:red]}red#{Ponder::Formatting::UNCOLOR_CODE}. This not."

Font Styles

If you want to make a text bold, italic or underlined, use Ponder::Formatting::BOLD, Ponder::Formatting::ITALIC or Ponder::Formatting::UNDERLINE. After the text, close it with the same constant. Example:

"This will be #{Ponder::Formatting::UNDERLINE}underlined#{Ponder::Formatting::UNDERLINE}. This not."

Shortened Formatting

If you don't always want to use Ponder::Formatting, use include Ponder::Formatting. All constants will then be availabe without Ponder::Formatting in front.

Source

The source can be found at GitHub: tbuehlmann/ponder.

You can contact me through GitHub and IRC (named tbuehlmann in the Freenode network).

Discworld Context

So, why all that silly names? Ponder Stibbons? Thaum? Twoflogger (referring to Twoflower), BlindIo? What's the Mended Drum? Who's the Librarian? Simply put, I freaking enshrine Terry Pratchett's Discworld Novels and there were no better name for this project than Ponder. Ponder Stibbons is the Head of Inadvisably Applied Magic at the Unseen University of Ankh Morpork. He researched the Thaum, like the atom, just for magic. And I just love that character, so there we are. If you're a fan too or want to talk about the Discworld, the framework, whatever, don't hesitate to contact me.

License

Copyright (c) 2010, 2011 Tobias Bühlmann

Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), to deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the Software is furnished to do so, subject to the following conditions:

The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software.

THE SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED "AS IS", WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO THE WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND NONINFRINGEMENT. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE AUTHORS OR COPYRIGHT HOLDERS BE LIABLE FOR ANY CLAIM, DAMAGES OR OTHER LIABILITY, WHETHER IN AN ACTION OF CONTRACT, TORT OR OTHERWISE, ARISING FROM, OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE SOFTWARE OR THE USE OR OTHER DEALINGS IN THE SOFTWARE.

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