help me cut through auto-complete choices

Does anyone have any success stories they can share regarding
implementing auto-complete in a Rails 2.3.2/jQuery environemnt?

I'm not looking for "how to do it." I'm seeking recommendations or
pointers to gems or plugings you have had success with.
Google turns up soooo many results I thought it would be smart to get
some "qualified leads."

Briefly:
for a contact management/scheduling app for the photo studio I work
for...

I had initially considered the app to revolve around a "contact." By
that I mean I had considered "contact" the single most important unit.
We deal with individuals, even though they happen to work for
companies.
Thus, I had initially included "company" as an attribute of "contact",
no more or less important than an attribute such as "first_name."

It is gradually occurring to me that "company" should be a model
itself.
So company has_many contacts and contact belongs_to company. That way
I will be able to reference all the assignments we have done for a
company in the same way that I can now reference all the assignments
we have done for an individual contact.

Ideally, I would like the user of the app to get an auto-complete
input field for "company" as they are creating a new contact record.
It would also be awesome for the user to be able to *create* a company
record from within the new contact form if there is no current record
for a given company. Does that make sense? (Presently I am imagining
the Company table to consist pretty much of just a name and id - not
very complex.)

And I wish to use jQuery because... well, because I understand jQuery
in a way I will never understand prototype, and I'm already using
jQuery extensively in my app.

So - to summarize a long post - can anyone narrow down the bewildering
options by recommending to me something that has worked well for them?

Thanks so much to any and all who have suggestions.

Steve

I have had success with simple_auto_complete[1]

I wrote a blog post[2] with the steps I went through using it.

Hope this helps,
Bryan

[1] http://github.com/grosser/simple_auto_complete
[2] http://bryan-ash.blogspot.com/2009/06/using-simpleautocomplete.html

Thanks a MILLION Bryan!
Will be sure to look into your case study. I'm grateful.

Steve

Steve Nelson wrote:
[...]

And I wish to use jQuery because... well, because I understand jQuery
in a way I will never understand prototype, and I'm already using
jQuery extensively in my app.

[...]

Hold it. Banish the phrase "will never understand $TECHNOLOGY" from
your coding vocabulary. Good programmers must remain open to learning
new things -- even things they thought they'd never understand. I'm not
saying you shouldn't use jQuery if you like it, but it seems to me that
the attitude you're displaying here will shut your mind off prematurely.

Best,

Marnen;

Hold it. Banish the phrase "will never understand $TECHNOLOGY" from
your coding vocabulary. Good programmers must remain open to learning
new things

Thank you for calling me on that. I appreciate and agree with the
point you make, and regret writing what I had intended to be read as a
wise crack. The second point, "using jQuery extensively in my app"
should have been enough and I should have left it there.

The fact is, I am NOT a good programmer. I try not to be closed to any
technology but I recognize my limitations (both time and experience)
and try to do the most with what I have to work with. I do take and
appreciate your point and the encouragement embedded in it.

Steve