RSpec 3 argument constraints use weak equality

If you expect method calls in RSpec 3, be aware that the argument matchers use very liberal equality rules (more like === instead of ==).

For example:

expect(subject).to receive(:foo).with(MyClass)      # satisfies the expectation  # also satisfies the expectation

expect(subject).to receive(:bar).with(/regex/)      # satisfies the expectation'regex')      # also satisfies the expectation

This is usually not an issue, except when your method argu...


RSpec: Expecting non-primitive objects as method invocation arguments

Expecting a primitive value as an argument to a method invocation is easy:

expect(object).to receive(:foo).with('arg1', 'arg2')

This expectation would be met with this call:'arg1', 'arg2')

But what if the argument is expected to be an object with a given set of methods? E.g. this class with #first_name and #last_name methods:

class Person

  def initialize(first_name, last_name)
    @first_name = first_name
    @last_name = last_name
  attr_reader :first_name, :last_name

To just t...


BEM naming conventions

We structure our CSS using the BEM pattern.

Our naming convention for blocks, elements and modifiers has evolved over the years. This card shows our current style and various alternative styles that you might encounter in older projects.

The difference between the various styles are mostly a matter of taste and optics. I do recommend to not mix styles and be consistent within a given project.

Current convention

Our current BEM naming convention looks...

Vortrag: Content Security Policy: Eine Einführung


CSP hat zum Ziel einen Browser-seitigen Mechanismus zu schaffen um einige Angriffe auf Webseiten zu verhindern, hauptsächlich XSS-Angriffe.

Einschub: Was ist XSS?

XSS = Cross Site Scripting. Passiert wenn ein User ungefiltertes HTML in die Webseite einfügen kann.

<div class="comment">
  Danke für den interessanten Beitrag! <script>alert('you have been hacked')</script>

Rails löst das Problem weitgehend, aber

  • Programmierfehler weiter möglich
  • manchmal Sicherheitslücken in Gems oder Rails


How to check if a file is a human readable text file

Ruby's File class has a handy method binary? which checks whether a file is a binary file. This method might be telling the truth most of the time. But sometimes it doesn't, and that's what causes pain. The method is defined as follows:

# Returns whether or not +file+ is a binary file.  Note that this is
# not guaranteed to be 100% accurate.  It performs a "best guess" based
# on a simple test of the first +File.blksize+ characters.
# Example:
#   File.binary?('somefile.exe') # => true
#   File.binary?('somefile.txt') # => fal...

How to: Context-dependent word expansion in RubyMine

One of the many useful features of TextMate is autocompletion of words. If I were in TextMate right now, I could write "au[tab]", and it would complete it to "autocompletion". RubyMine can do this, too. When you write a word (e.g. a variable name), just hit ALT + / repeatedly and it will offer all completions for the letters you typed. This action is called Cyclic Expand Word in RubyMine / IntelliJ IDEA.

This feature keeps you from mistyping variable names, saves you keystrokes and speeds up development. ~10 keystrokes to the price ...

How to migrate CoffeeScript files from Sprockets to Webpack(er)

If you migrate a Rails application from Sprockets to Webpack(er), you can either transpile your CoffeeScript files to JavaScript or integrate a CoffeeScript compiler to your new process. This checklist can be used to achieve the latter.

  1. If you need to continue exposing your CoffeeScript classes to the global namespace, define them on window directly:
-class @User
+class window.User
  1. Replace Sprocket's require statement with Webpacker's...
Linked content

The State of Ruby 3 Typing | Square Corner Blog

We're pleased to announce Ruby 3’s new language for type signatures, RBS. One of the long-stated goals for Ruby 3 has been to add type checking tooling. After much discussion with Matz and the Ruby committer team, we decided to take the incremental step of adding a foundational type signature language called “RBS,” which will ship with Ruby 3 along with signatures for the stdlib. RBS command line tooling will also ship with Ruby 3, so you can generate signatures for your own Ruby code.

Ruby 3 is coming, and it will have optional type sign...

Linked contentRepeats

Ag: Very fast grep replacement

Ag (aka "the silver searcher") is a very fast replacement for grep.

It will parse your .gitignore for additional speedup. To ignore even more files (node_modules, *.min.js etc), add an .ignore with syntax identical to .gitignore.

See Faster Grepping in Vim for hints about vim integration.

Linked contentRepeats

Verifying doubles in RSpec 3

RSpec 3 has verifying doubles. This breed of mock objects check that any methods being stubbed are present on an instance of a given class. They also check methods aren't called with the wrong number of arguments.

This dual approach allows you to move very quickly and test components in isolation, while
giving you confidence that your doubles are not a complete fiction.

You should always prefer using a verifying double to using an old-...

Linked content

Introducing GoodJob 1.0, a new Postgres-based, multithreaded, ActiveJob backend for Ruby on Rails

GoodJob is a new background worker gem. It's compatible with ActiveJob.

We're huge fans of Sidekiq for its stability and features. One advantage of GoodJob over Sidekiq is that GoodJob doesn't require Redis. So in cases where you don't have Redis or don't want to pay for a Redis HA quorum node, this might be an alternative worth checking out.

Linked content

Fixing wall of warnings: already initialized constant Etc::PC_SYMLINK_MAX

These warnings are printed when the etc Gem is installed, while etc is also included in Ruby. Fix with:

gem uninstall etc

MySQL: CONCAT with NULL fields


CONCAT('foo', 'bar', NULL) = NULL

the NULL always wins in MySQL.

If you would rather treat NULL as an empty string, use CONCAT_WS (concatenation with separator) instead:

CONCAT_WS('', 'foo', 'bar', NULL) = 'foobar'


In PostgreSQL the NULL is not viral in CONCAT:

CONCAT('foo', 'bar', NULL) = 'foobar'

Git: Merge a single commit from another branch

This is called "cherry-picking".

git cherry-pick commit-sha1

Note that since branches are nothing but commit pointers, cherry-picking the latest commit of a branch is as simple as

git cherry-pick my-feature-branch

Be aware that cherry-picking will make a copy of the picked commit, with its own hash. If you merge the branch later, the commit will appear in a history a second time (probably without a diff since there was nothing left to do).

Also see our advice for [cherry picking to production branches](https://makandraca...


Automatically validating dependency licenses with LicenseFinder

Open-source software (OSS) is great. Anyone can use virtually any open-source code in their projects.

Well, it depends. Licenses can make things difficult, especially when you are developing closed-source software. Since some OSS licenses even require the employing application to be open-sourced as well (looking at you, GPL), you cannot use such software in a closed-source project.

To be sure on this, we have developed a project-level integration of Pivotal's excellent [license_finder](https://g...


ActiveRecord: String and text fields should always validate their length

If you have a :string or :text field, you should pair it with a model validation that restricts its length.

There are two motivations for this:

  • In modern Rails, database types :string and :text no longer have a relevant size limit. Without a validation a malicious user can quickly exhaust the hard drive of your database server.
  • In legacy Rails (or database schemas migrated from legacy Rails), database types :string and :text had a database-side length constraint. When the user enters a longer string, the ActiveRecord valida...

How to prevent Nokogiri from fixing invalid HTML

Nokogiri is great. It will even fix invalid HTML for you, like a browser would (e.g. move block elements out of parents which are specified to not allow them).

>> Nokogiri::HTML.fragment("<h1><p>foo</p><span>bar</span></h1>").to_s
=> "<h1></h1><p>foo</p><span>bar</span>"

While this is mostly useful, browsers are actually fine with a bit of badly formatted HTML. And you don't want to be the one to blame when the SEO guy complains about an empty <h1>.

To avoid said behavior, use Nokogiri::XML instead of Nokogiri::HTML when par...

Linked content

FactoryBot: Traits for enums

FactoryBot allows to create traits from Enums since version 6.0.0

The automatic definition of traits for Active Record enum attributes is enabled by default, for non-Active Record enums you can use the traits_for_enum method.


factory :user do
  traits_for_enum :role, %w[admin contact] # you can use User::ROLES here, of course

is equivalent to

factory :user do
  trait :admin do
    role { 'admin' }

  trait :contact do
    role { 'c...
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