Devalot, Rocks a lot

So I stumbled onto Devalot, and I have to say I like what I see. This thing has the potential to kick some butt. I really like the blog aggregation to the front page. If they go the right direction with the source integration this thing will replace Trac and Wordpress on my stuff no problem.

I just wish I had more “free-time” to help out with it, new gigs tend to eat a lot of time.

Hpricot Scrub

[UPDATE 2007-02-07] Changed scrub to return self [/UPDATE]

Using Hpricot to Scrub HTML - The remix

So I wanted to bring the HTML Scrubber into my Hpricot tweaks to tidy it up a bit and this is what I ended up with.

Now you can use the following to remove all tags from an HTML snippet

doc = Hpricot(open('').read)

Strip all hrefs, leaving the text inside in tact (doc/:a).strip Scrub the snippet based on a config hash



require 'hpricot'

module Hpricot
  class Elements
    def strip
      each { |x| x.strip }

    def strip_attributes(safe=[])
      each { |x| x.strip_attributes(safe) }

  class Elem
    def remove

    def strip
      children.each { |x| x.strip unless x.class == Hpricot::Text }

      if strip_removes?
        parent.replace_child self, Hpricot.make(inner_html) unless parent.nil?

    def strip_attributes(safe=[])
      attributes.each {|atr|
          remove_attribute(atr[0]) unless safe.include?(atr[0])
      } unless attributes.nil?

    def strip_removes?
      # I'm sure there are others that shuould be ripped instead of stripped
      attributes && attributes['type'] =~ /script|css/

  class Doc
    def scrub(config={})
      config = {
        :nuke_tags => [],
        :allow_tags => [],
        :allow_attributes => []

      config[:nuke_tags].each { |tag| (self/tag).remove }
      config[:allow_tags].each { |tag|
      children.reverse.each {|e|
        e.strip unless e.class == Hpricot::Text ||

Sample config in YAML

  :allow_tags: # let these tags stay, but will strip attributes
    - 'b'
    - 'blockquote'
    - 'br'
    - 'div'
    - 'h1'
    - 'h2'
    - 'h3'
    - 'h4'
    - 'h5'
    - 'h6'
    - 'hr'
    - 'i'
    - 'em'
    - 'img'
    - 'li'
    - 'ol'
    - 'p'
    - 'pre'
    - 'small'
    - 'span'
    - 'span'
    - 'strike'
    - 'strong'
    - 'sub'
    - 'sup'
    - 'table'
    - 'tbody'
    - 'td'
    - 'tfoot'
    - 'thead'
    - 'tr'
    - 'u'
    - 'ul'

  :nuke_tags: # completely removes everything between open and close tag
    - 'form'
    - 'script'

  :allow_attributes: # let these attributes stay, strip all others
    - 'src'
    - 'font'
    - 'alt'
    - 'style'
    - 'align'

The source with sample data/test, run the test with

ruby test

Managing gems with Rake

[UPDATE 2007-02-07] I realized I left some extra junk in the version of Util in the zip, it’s been updated [/UPDATE]

I have a rake task and a Util class that I use to make setting up required gems painless and to be sure that I’m always running the versions I think I am.

Install or update required gems

rake gems:install

Make sure they are loaded with the right versions during startup, by adding the following to environment.rb


This uses a config file that looks like

:source: # this is optional
  - :name: mongrel
    :version: "1.0"
    # this gem has a specfic source URL
    :source: ''

  - :name: hpricot
    :version: '0.4'
    # this tells us to load not just install
    :load: true

  - :name: postgres
    :version: '0.7.1'
    :load: true
    # any extra config that needs to be passed to gem install
    :config: '--with-pgsql-include-dir=/usr/local/pgsql/include

Here’s the Util class

require 'yaml'

class Util
  def self.load_gems
    config = YAML.load_file(
      File.join(RAILS_ROOT, 'config', 'gems.yml'))
    gems = config[:gems].reject {|gem| ! gem[:load] }
    gems.each do |gem|
      require_gem gem[:name], gem[:version]
      require gem[:name]

Here’s the rake task

require 'yaml'

namespace :gems do
  require 'rubygems'

  task :install do
    # defaults to --no-rdoc, set DOCS=(anything) to build docs
    docs = (ENV['DOCS'].nil? ? '--no-rdoc' : '')
    #grab the list of gems/version to check
    config = YAML.load_file(File.join('config', 'gems.yml'))
    gems = config[:gems]

    gems.each do |gem|
      # load the gem spec
      gem_spec = YAML.load(`gem spec #{gem[:name]} 2> /dev/null`)
      gem_loaded = false
        gem_loaded = require_gem gem[:name], gem[:version]
      rescue Exception

      # if forced
      # or there is no gem_spec
      # or the spec version doesn't match the required version
      # or require_gem returns false
      # (return false also happens if the gem has already been loaded)
      if ! ENV['FORCE'].nil? ||
         ! gem_spec ||
         (gem_spec.version.version != gem[:version] && ! gem_loaded)
        gem_config = gem[:config] ? " -- #{gem[:config]}" : ''
        source = gem[:source] || config[:source] || nil
        source = "--source #{source}" if source
        ret = system "gem install #{gem[:name]}
            -v #{gem[:version]} -y #{source} #{docs} #{gem_config}"
        # something bad happened, pass on the message
        p $? unless ret
        puts "#{gem[:name]} #{gem[:version]} already installed"

zipped source

FCKeditor on Rails goes plugin

Just a quick announcement, FCKeditor on Rails will run in Rails 1.2 as a plugin (with a little help), more info on the blog or in trac.

Best thing since sliced bread

Jamis Buck has shed a little light on figuring out WTF that Ruby process eating all your processor is actually doing.

Alright, maybe not quite the same as sliced bread, but very nice none-the-less.

I can’t tell you how many times I could have used this, now I just need to wait for the need to pop up again.

[UPDATE] Apparently it get’s better than this, much better