Highlighting Text fin red rom DB in view

Can anyone think of an easier way to do this?

How about using the 'highlight' helper method in your view instead?

I was just looking into Text::HTMLHighlighter....is that what you mean?

Aaron Chase wrote:

I was thinking about the one in ActionView::Helpers::TextHelper. The
description is as follows:

highlight(text, phrases, highlighter = '<strong class="highlight">\1</


Highlights one or more phrases everywhere in text by inserting it into
a highlighter string. The highlighter can be specialized by passing
highlighter as a single-quoted string with \1 where the phrase is to
be inserted (defaults to '<strong class="highlight">\1</strong>')

hmmmm....that looks like it might work...thanks

How do I include that Rails application. I tried just putting this in my
view and it does nothing:

highlight('this is sample text', 'text')

How does rail know about it..maybe I should requiring action_view ?

Aaron Chase wrote:

It should be available in your view. I just tried adding this to my
view and it worked as advertised:

<%= highlight("this is sample text", "text") %>

I'm using Rails 2.0.2.

sorry for that...I didn't even try it with the <%= at the
beginning.....it does work for me too now....thanks for the help on

The only issue I have is that it makes the text strong bold....what I
need is to make it highlighted in red or other colors....I don't see
anything in the doco to do that.

I installed Text::HTMLHighlighter and all the tests ran successfully but
I can't seem to figure out how to get it to work in my view. There is an
.rb file that I'm supposed to call somehow and I can't figure you how to
do it. The directions seem to make me think Text::HTMLHighlighter is
made to work with other ruby files and not specifically for Rails...not


Aaron Chase wrote:

As stated in the docs, you can specialize the highlighter by providing
a value for the 3rd argument. The default is to highlight using
<strong> text, but you can get the effect you want by doing something

<%= highlight('this is sample text', 'text', '<span class='highlight">
\1</span>') %>

and adding this to your CSS file:

.highlight {color: red}

Burning the candle at both ends, I see from the timestamp of your last
message :slight_smile:

You've helped me alot, Aaron...and thank you for that.

As you have pointed out...defining highlight in my CSS works perfectly.
In fact, I found that as soon as I defined it, the following statement

<%= highlight('this is simple text', 'text') %>

And I didn't have to add the <span class = "highlight"> part although
that worked as well.

The last question I have is what happens when I want to highlight more
than one word if it appears in my variable?

For instance, I have a variable that contains a date, what I need to be
able to do is highlight Thu when it's Thursday but always highlight
This works to always highlight 2008:

<%= highlight(trap.datetime.to_s, '2008') %>

I was hoping I could do something like this but it doesn't work because
it looks for both of them in a string:

<%= highlight(trap.datetime.to_s, 'Thu, 2008') %>

What I'm actually trying to accomplish here, is to highlight certain
words in my network traps in red. For instance, if I got a trap that
contained the word "BGP", I want that highlighted in red as well as if
the word "Spanning-tree" is contained in the trap. This is why I was
hoping to be able to specify several words to be highlighted if they
exist in my variable.

thanks alot Aaron,


Aaron Chase wrote:

Specifying an array for the 2nd argument should do the trick:

<%= highlight(trap.datetime.to_s, ['Thu', '2008']) %>

You may have to add spaces to your phrase strings to prevent the
highlighter from highlighting things you didn't intend. For example,
I tried this

<%= highlight('foo bar foobar', ['foo', 'bar']) %>

and it highlighted the 'foobar' substring since 'foo' matched the
first part of the string and 'bar' matched the last part of it.
Changing the phrase array to ['foo ', 'bar '] (note the embedded
whitespace) fixed it.

I can't thank you enough for your help on this...I'm up and running on
this now and all is looking good.


Aaron Chase wrote:

Aaron....I wanted to run one more thing by you on this subject if you
don't mind?

I am using the following command which works nicely to highlight key
words in red if they are contained in my network trap:

<%= highlight(trap.desc4.to_s,['DOWN', 'COLD', 'BGP', 'RESTART',
'SPAN']) %>

Can you think of an easy way to highlight some words in red and others
in another color?

I have never used a conditional if statement in a view before and don't
even know if that's possible....if it was, I was thinking something like
this might be the a solution:

<%= highlight(trap.desc4.to_s,['DOWN', 'COLD', 'BGP', 'RESTART',
'SPAN']) %>
<%= highlight_blue(trap.desc4.to_s,['UP', 'HOT', 'OSPF', 'START',
'LINK']) %>

...or perhaps you might know of an easier solution which I am

thanks for all the help


jackster the jackle wrote:

Just off the top of my head, you could write your own helper something
like this:

def highlight_with_color(text, phrases, color_spec)
  highlight(text, phrases, '<span style="color:#{color_spec};">\1</



and then use it in your view like this:

<%= highlight_with_color("foo bar", ["foo, bar"], "#abcdef") %>

Disclaimer: I haven't actually tried this code, but I think something
like this should work. Someone in this group may also have a better