time.rb

When 'time' is required, Time is extended with additional methods for parsing and converting Times.

Features

This library extends the Time class with the following conversions between date strings and Time objects:

  • date-time defined by RFC 2822

  • HTTP-date defined by RFC 2616

  • dateTime defined by XML Schema Part 2: Datatypes (ISO 8601)

  • various formats handled by Date._parse

  • custom formats handled by Date._strptime

Examples

All examples assume you have loaded Time with:

require 'time'

All of these examples were done using the EST timezone which is GMT-5.

Converting to a String

t = Time.now
t.iso8601  # => "2011-10-05T22:26:12-04:00"
t.rfc2822  # => "Wed, 05 Oct 2011 22:26:12 -0400"
t.httpdate # => "Thu, 06 Oct 2011 02:26:12 GMT"

Time.parse

#parse takes a string representation of a Time and attempts to parse it using a heuristic.

Date.parse("2010-10-31") #=> 2010-10-31 00:00:00 -0500

Any missing pieces of the date are inferred based on the current date.

# assuming the current date is "2011-10-31"
Time.parse("12:00") #=> 2011-10-31 12:00:00 -0500

We can change the date used to infer our missing elements by passing a second object that responds to #mon, #day and #year, such as Date, Time or DateTime. We can also use our own object.

class MyDate
  attr_reader :mon, :day, :year

  def initialize(mon, day, year)
    @mon, @day, @year = mon, day, year
  end
end

d  = Date.parse("2010-10-28")
t  = Time.parse("2010-10-29")
dt = DateTime.parse("2010-10-30")
md = MyDate.new(10,31,2010)

Time.parse("12:00", d)  #=> 2010-10-28 12:00:00 -0500
Time.parse("12:00", t)  #=> 2010-10-29 12:00:00 -0500
Time.parse("12:00", dt) #=> 2010-10-30 12:00:00 -0500
Time.parse("12:00", md) #=> 2010-10-31 12:00:00 -0500

#parse also accepts an optional block. You can use this block to specify how to handle the year component of the date. This is specifically designed for handling two digit years. For example, if you wanted to treat all two digit years prior to 70 as the year 2000+ you could write this:

Time.parse("01-10-31") {|year| year + (year < 70 ? 2000 : 1900)}
#=> 2001-10-31 00:00:00 -0500
Time.parse("70-10-31") {|year| year + (year < 70 ? 2000 : 1900)}
#=> 1970-10-31 00:00:00 -0500

Time.strptime

#strptime works similar to parse except that instead of using a heuristic to detect the format of the input string, you provide a second argument that describes the format of the string. For example:

Time.strptime("2000-10-31", "%Y-%m-%d") #=> 2000-10-31 00:00:00 -0500