Value of text_with_auto_complete_field for field observer

I'm trying to use the results of an auto complete form in a field
observer. The problem is the value of the field is just a select item
in a UL. So if I have this:

<%= text_field_with_auto_complete :school, :name %>

<%= observe_field 'school_name',
      :url => {:action => 'get_students_by_school'},
      :update => 'student_list',
      :with => 'school[name]' %>

I type 'an', select 'Anderson High' or whatever and the parameters
look like this:

"school"=>{"name"=>"an"}

My latest hack attempt was to have the observer render a
link_to_remote button ('find school') with the value of li.selected as
its id. Couldn't get that to work.

When you submit the form, obviously the value of the school[name]
parameter is correct, so I'd like to know how I can recreate this
functionality in my field observer.

As an aside, I can't find the documentation on the auto complete
helper in the API.

I guess onchange is not fired because the field is in the end set with JavaScript. You'll surely need to pass some JavaScript for the :after_update_element hook of the rightmost optional parameter completion_options. That JavaScript would do what you wanted to do with the observe_field, which would be removed.

-- fxn

Let me add that with model_auto_completer[*] you could send back the school ID instad of the name via its own :after_update_element hook.

Depending on the data that would be a better way to get the list of students of the school.

-- fxn

[*] http://agilewebdevelopment.com/plugins/model_auto_completer

Awesome. I'll try this out and let you know how it goes.