You can read this file nicely formatted at the Rubyforge project page:


Remarkable is a framework for rspec matchers that supports macros and I18n. It's constituted of three pieces:

  • Remarkable: the framework with helpers, DSL, I18n and rspec features;

  • Remarkable ActiveModel: a collection of matchers for ActiveModel compliant models. It currently supports all ActiveModel validations. Future plan include testing for ActiveModel API compliance and ActiveModel serialization.

  • Remarkable ActiveRecord: a collection of matchers for ActiveRecord. It supports all ActiveRecord validations, associations and some extra matchers.

  • Remarkable Rails: a collection of matchers for ActionController. It also includes MacroStubs, which is a clean DSL for stubbing your controller methods.

    NOTE: Remarkable Rails is currently not available for version 4.0.0.alpha1 We are thinking of breaking this up into Remarkable Rack, and Remarkable ActionController gems, along the lines of splitting off ActiveModel macros.

In each folder above, you can find a README more detailed description of each piece.

Why use Remarkable for Rails?

  • The only one with matchers for all ActiveRecord validations, with support to all options (except :on and the option :with in validates_format_of);

  • Matchers for all ActiveRecord associations. The only one which supports all these options:

    :through, :source, :source_type, :class_name, :foreign_key, :dependent,
    :join_table, :uniq, :readonly, :validate, :autosave, :counter_cache, :polymorphic

    Plus Arel scopes:

    :select, :where, :include, :group, :having, :order, :limit, :offset

    Besides in Remarkable 4.0 matchers became much smarter. Whenever :join_table or :through is given as option, it checks if the given table exists. Whenever :foreign_key or :counter_cache is given, it checks if the given column exists;

  • ActionController matchers:

    :assign_to, :filter_params, :redirect_to, :render_with_layout, :respond_with, 
    :render_template, :route, :set_session and :set_the_flash;
  • Macro stubs: make your controllers specs easier to main, more readable and DRY;

  • Tests and more tests. We have a huge tests suite ready to run and tested in Rails 2.1.2, 2.2.2 and 2.3.2;

  • I18n and great documentation.

  • It has your style. You can choose between:

    1) it { should validate_numericality_of(:age).greater_than(18).only_integer }
    2) it { should validate_numericality_of(:age, :greater_than => 18, :only_integer => true) }
    3) should_validate_numericality_of :age, :greater_than => 18, :only_integer => true
    4) should_validate_numericality_of :age do |m|
         m.greater_than 18
         # Or: m.greater_than = 18

Remarkable Rails requires rspec >= 2.0.0 and rspec-rails >= 2.0.0.

Install on Rails

Install the gem:

sudo gem install remarkable_rails

This will install remarkable, remarkable_activerecord and remarkable_rails gems.

Inside Rails you need to require just this gem. If you are using ActiveRecord, it will automatically require the remarkable_activerecord gem.

Rails 3

In Rails 3, in order to rspec load properly, you have to use this configuration on your Gemfile

gem "rspec"
gem "rspec-rails"
gem "remarkable_activerecord"

NOTE: remarkable_rails is currently not supported.

Add the require after the rspec/rails line in your spec_helpers.rb. Although RSpec2 convention encourages you to use spec/support/, if you have Remarkable matchers in there, you will want to load that after you load Remarkable

require 'rspec/rails'
require 'remarkable/active_record'

Alternatively, if you are using an ActiveModel-compliant gem, such as the newer Mongo and CouchDB gems, you can use:

require 'remarkable/active_model'

and have access to all ActiveModel matchers. Note that loading remarkable/active_record will automatically load remarkable/active_model

This is the safest way to avoid conflicts.

Please note, due to the massive refactoring in Rails 3 and RSpec 2, we are not supporting backwards compatibility with Rails 2 or RSpec 1. You will need to use the Remarkable 3.x series if you are still using Rails 2.

How to setup your machine to contribute with remarkable?

gem install bundler bundle install rake # red, green, refactor


If you are developing matchers, for example hpricot matchers, you need to install only the remarkable “core” gem:

sudo gem install remarkable

If you stumble into any problem or have doubts while building your matchers, please drop us a line. We are currently searching for people who wants to join us and provide matchers for Datamapper, Sequel, Sinatra and all other possible options. :)

Browse the documentation


Remarkable ActiveRecord:

Remarkable Rails:

More information

Google group: Bug tracking:



All projects are under MIT LICENSE.