Proper error messages on rails

In order to have proper validation error messages on the web page I want to specify what the message will look like. Problem is that if you set validation message in your Person model like this:

validates_format_of :email, :with => /\A([^@\s]+)@((?:[-a-z0-9]+\.)+[a-z]{2,})\Z/i, :message => ‘invalid e-mail address’

you get on you page error message like this:

1 error prohibited this person from being saved

There were problems with the following fields:

‘Email invalid e-mail address’

but customer wants something more human like., for example:

Oh dear there were problem

That doesn’t look like a valid e-mail address. Please try again.

I found a solution and here is how to do that. First we change the Header error message and delete the submessage.

In your view where you are displaying errors use proper options for error_messages_for

error_messages_for(:person, :header_message => “Oh dear there were problem”, :message => “”)

Than the interesting part, error messages are in this format [attribute_name, message] but we need only the message part so without any hacking or parsing we can specify format of the message directly:

validates_format_of :email, :with => /\A([^@\s]+)@((?:[-a-z0-9]+\.)+[a-z]{2,})\Z/i, :message => :”email.format”

The part :”email.format” says that you have specified message text at your i18n file (usually config/locale/en.yml) .

          format: "That doesn't look like a valid e-mail address. Please try again."

And that’s it :) Feel free to comment.

Hiring as a game

I saw an interview with Amy Jo Kim at about game mechanics,recently. Today I saw Slideshare called Designing a Game Changer by Philip Fierlinger from Xero. At the and of the presentation is short notice that Xero is hiring.
Than I just got an idea about making from hiring a game.
Here is example situation:
You are working for big company as a HR person or something like that and you need hire few programmers. As a clever HR person you come out with game called “win a macbook” or some catchy. Rules of the game is simple.
Write some algorithms or complete some tasks. If you want to be more precise you will write more levels of this game and provide some kind of feedback.
The winner of course win the price and you can offer him and other best solvers the job.
If you are lucky some solvers accept your offer. In the end you will have great programmer and save some money for personal agency.
This principle is applicable in larger scale and has of course some difficulties but is just an idea. :)

jQuery bug or just strange behavior ?

Today I discovered some strange behavior of jQuery library, when I added some new functionality to our old adminstration.
So I’ve got Form element with some inputs and submit button. On inputs are binded click event. That mean that only if you click on input element Event will fire, right ? But I found that even if you press return key, Event fires too. I know that if you press return key and you are inside form element, Form will fire submit Event. But it fires click Event which is strange. jQuery documentation says:
The click event fires when the pointing device button is clicked over an element. A click is defined as a mousedown and mouseup over the same screen location. The sequence of these events is:

* mousedown
* mouseup
* click
Do you see any keyPress event or something, I don’t. I just don’t know if it is a bug or if it’s purpose. I also test if it’s because that keyPress Event or because that submit. It seems to me that if you press return key jQuery call submit Event and somehow call click Event too. Here is a example. What do you think ?

Solution for prevent this behavior is bind click Event only to inputs whith type text.

Btw: It works same way at all browsers.

HTML5 storage

I recently started write pomodoro aplication to practice my skills and try out new technologies.
One of new technology that I tried is HTML5 storage. Storage is actually database but I prefer the word storage.
I show you some examples here. I also
must tell you that Html5 storage works only at Safari. I tried it at Firefox 3.5 and Chrome
but didn’t work even after installation WebKit Nightly.

Fist step is change doctype definition and put manifest at html tag:

1: <!doctype html>
2: <html manifest="PomodoroTimer.manifest">

Ar row 2 you can see defintion of manifest file which is like cache. You can named it
as you like.

Step two is javascript. Because you need somehow dynamicaly add and remove or create records at your hmtl5 storage,
javascript is the right choice. So here is how you can create storage.

if (window.openDatabase){
  storage = openDatabase("pomodoro_timer", "1.0",
   "HTML5 Database for PomodoroTimer", 200000);
  if (!storage)
    alert("Failed to open the database on disk.");
  } else {
    alert("Couldn't open the database.);

At first line you can see how to check if window object support starage. At line 2 I create instance
of a storage: storage name, a storage version, a display name, and an estimated size, in bytes, of the data to be stored in the storage/database.
Rest of lines didn’t need an explanation.

So we created a database next step is create some table.

storage.transaction(function(request) {
  request.executeSql("SELECT COUNT(*) FROM tasks", [], function(result) {},
  function(request, error) {
    request.executeSql("CREATE TABLE tasks 
         number_of_pomodoros INT, number_of_interuptions INT)", [],
      function(result, error) {           

At line one we create an anonymous function for storage transaction. Official definition of transaction method:
“The transaction method takes one to three arguments:
a transaction callback, an error callback, and a success callback. The transaction callback gets passed a SQL transaction object on
which you can use the executeSQL() method.This method takes from one to four arguments: a SQL statement, arguments, a SQL statement callback,
and a SQL statement error callback. The SQL statement callback gets passed the transaction object and a SQL statement result object which gives access to the rows, last inserted ID, et cetera.

Last step is insert some data to the table.

storage.transaction(function(request) {
  request.executeSql("INSERT INTO tasks 
     (name, number_of_pomodoros, number_of_interuptions) VALUES (?, ?, ?)", 
    [, task.number_of_pomodoros, task.number_of_interuptions],
     function(result) {}, 
       function(request, error) {

I inserted some data from my object Task. You can see complete code
My sources was this example aplication and w3c documentation.

Have fun.
ps: Select from storage is asynchronous so my pomodoro aplication didn’t use html storage until I resolve this issue.

Pair programming

I just finished pair programming with my friend Laco who live at Barcelona. We used Skype, Collabedit and gitHub for code synchronization. I’m really tired after six hours, but I’ve good feeling about this. I hope we will continue on that soon. You can see our work here.

Quick example of testing login form with mechanize and Test::Unit

I started testing with Ruby. So i first use Test::Unit and then i want to test some functionality on web. I read some examples at mechanize documentation, which is here or at your ruby/gems directory. So let’s look at the code.
require ‘mechanize’
require ‘test/unit’

class LoginTest < Test::Unit::TestCase
def test_login

#creating mechanize object
agent =

#setting url
page = agent.get(‘’)

# get first html form on page, u can use page.form(‘form_name’)
login_form = page.forms.first

#fill value <input type=”text” name=”log” /> with login name
login_form.log = ‘name’

#fill value <input name=”pwd” type=”password” /> with password
login_form.pwd = ‘secrets’

#submiting form and saving result page to value page
page = google_form.submit()

# test if login was succesflull
assert_equal ‘Dashboard ‹ Petr Zaparka — WordPress’, page.title

It’s very easy and simply. However you can’t test javasript functionality. Next time i post testing with WEBRAT.

Multiline comments in Ruby

Do you want comment more than one row ? So use multiline comment like this :


your code


Important rule, this code must be at the begining of row.

PS: This code isn’t  exactly for comments, but you can us it this way ;-)

How to add second mysql server with installed WAMP

Because I started  learning Ruby on Rails I needed to run some database server for ruby. I like mysql.  I developing web aplications with WAMP (Windows + Apache + Mysql + PHP). So i tried to run Ruby on Rails with pre-installed version of mysql 5.1.33 but Rails didn’t work properly. I tried to find how to fix the problem bud it seems that Ruby on Rails has  some problems with mysql 5.1.33.

So i refused SQLite and PostgreSQL for my personal reasons, than only one option left, another mysql server. I downloaded mysql server 5.0. run installation and than configuration that failed in last item (security settings). But mysql server worked quite well.

I was wondering if Rails are going to accept another sqlserver. It didn’t let use say it did but i forget set different port to mysql server 5.0. So i had an idea that this port problem can cause the security problem. So i run configuaration tools set port to 3309 and click to final step and security problem appeared again.Never mind I thought. I added a line port: 3309 as you can see below,

adapter: mysql
encoding: utf8
reconnect: false
database: blog_development
pool: 5
username: root
password: my_passwd
host: localhost
port: 3309

to database.yml in config folder of my project and run rake db:create.

Rails worked fine and WAMP too :).

So in short, you only need to set a different port to run 2 mysql servers at one pc.

PS: It may occur Error mesage  like:’ libmySQL.dll missing ‘ or something like that. You will fix this by copy libmySQL.dll from installed mysqlServer 5 directory (installedpath/mysql server 5.0/bin) to your ruby directory (installedpath/ruby/bin).

Start learning Ruby and Ruby on Rails framework

I has been developing Internet aplication about 9 years. In everyday work i use  PHP and AJAX technology. It is quite a long time ago when my friend Ladislav Martincik told me  about Ruby on Rails. I seen some amazing presentation of Rails framework he showed me. I wonder why I did not start learning and using Rails and Ruby at  that time. Maby it was too early for me or maybe i was  too lazy.

But …

I starting now. I bought book Begining Ruby on Rails last week. But the book seems to me that is little confusing. So i was browsing a little and I found this cool book called  ‘Poignant Guide to Ruby”. It is kind of unconventional but i love it. It is funny and very brightly written.  I’m looking forward to read more chapters tomorow.

Ps: I wonder how high can insects fly, because I live at 8th floor and it still bothers  me.