Feature #7121

Extending the use of `require'

Added by Morgan Jones about 3 years ago. Updated about 3 years ago.

Assignee:Yukihiro Matsumoto


I was playing with Ruby tonight and thought up an interesting idea to make (({require})) a bit better, so you can load multiple files sequentially using one method call.

Currently, (({require})) supports one argument, and throws a (({TypeError})) if you pass an array:

irb(main):001:0> require %w(json yaml)
TypeError: can't convert Array into String

However, there's a way to patch Kernel that makes it respond to multiple objects passed in an (({Array})).

module Kernel
@@require = method :require

def require *args
args.collect! do |a|
raise ArgumentError.new "arguments to `require' must be strings or symbols" unless a.is_a?(String) || a.is_a?(Symbol)
@@require.call a.to_s

 args.length == 1 ? args.first : args


The new behavior doesn't actually require the modification of any code that calls (({require})) (pretty much anything, really), and new code can take advantage of the new functionality instantly.

irb> require %w(json yaml)
=> [true, false]
irb> require :pp
=> false
irb> require 'rails'
=> true
irb> require %w(json yaml), :pp, 'rails'
=> [true, false, false, true]

Thanks for considering this.


#1 Updated by Tom Wardrop about 3 years ago

I personally don't mind your suggestion. It makes sense to me. I can't think of any potential negative side effects. On that note, I think the return value should always be a boolean, instead of a boolean OR an array of booleans depending on the input. #require should return true if any of the listed files were loaded, or false if none of them were. If you need to determine the loaded state of each file (the lesser common use case I'd imagine), then you should resort to looping over multiple calls to #require.

#2 Updated by Yusuke Endoh about 3 years ago

  • Status changed from Open to Assigned
  • Assignee set to Yukihiro Matsumoto
  • Target version set to next minor

#3 Updated by Thomas Sawyer about 3 years ago

It's ugly, as it makes code harder to read. Please no.

#4 Updated by Ilya Vorontsov about 3 years ago

Just an alternative idea. What about using Regexp as an alternative to String?
require /.*_helper/

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