Using a hash with a FormHelper

Is it possible to have a FormHelper (i.e. text_field) get it's value
from a hash, instead of an object. For example, my application uses a
datetime field to determine when something should happen. In the
database it is stored as YYYY-MM-DD hh:mm:ss (20071022 19:20:00), but
for the user I want to format it like MM/DD/YYYY hh:mm and using
standard time instead of military (10/22/2007 7:20p). My hash looks
something like this:

@date = { :year => 2007, :month => 22, :day => 10, :hour => 7, :minute
=> 20, :ampm => "pm" }

Is there anyway I can use a FormHelper for this and similar hashes:

<%= text_field @date, :year %>

There are a number of areas on the site where I have a similar issue
and would like to find a consistent solution.


To solve this, I created a class that takes a hash as it's input and
use the resulting object in my FormHelper functions. I am not sure
what the hit on performance is on this, but it works!


module HashModel

  class Model

    def initialize(hash)
      if /^Hash/.match(hash.class.to_s)
        @my_hash = hash
        raise "Only a hash may be passed to object. You passed:

    def empty?

    def method_missing(method_id)

      # if value is an number, then we should return an int. This is
for the select helper. "1" and 1 are not the same, so the selected
element does not get chosen.
      if @my_hash && @my_hash.key?(method_id.to_s) && /\A\d+
      elsif @my_hash && @my_hash.key?(method_id.to_s)