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One stop solution for all survey related requirements! Its tad easy!

This gem supports rails 3.2.13+, rails4 and rails5 versions.

You can see a demo of this gem here. And the source code of demo here.


Add this line to your application's Gemfile:

    gem 'rapidfire'

And then execute:

    $ bundle install
    $ bundle exec rake rapidfire:install:migrations
    $ bundle exec rake db:migrate

And if you want to customize rapidfire views, you can do

$ bundle exec rails generate rapidfire:views

If you want to customize rapidfire locales (i18n) files, you can do

$ bundle exec rails generate rapidfire:locales


Add this line to your routes will and you will be good to go!

    mount Rapidfire::Engine => "/rapidfire"

And point your browser to http://localhost:3000/rapidfire

All rapidfire controllers inherit from your ApplicationController. So define 2 methods current_user and can_administer? on your ApplicationController

  1. current_user : the user who is answering the survey. can be nil
  2. can_administer? : a method which determines whether current user can create/update survey questions.

Typical implementation would be:

  class ApplicationController < ActionController::Base
    def current_user
      @current_user ||= User.find(session[:user_id])

    def can_administer?

If you are using authentication gems like devise, you get current_user for free and you don't have to define it.


Override path to redirect after answer the survey

# my_app/app/decorators/controllers/rapidfire/answer_groups_controller_decorator.rb
Rapidfire::AnswerGroupsController.class_eval do
  def after_answer_path_for

Routes Information

Once this gem is mounted on, say at 'rapidfire', it generates several routes You can see them by running bundle exec rake routes.

  1. The root_path i.e localhost:3000/rapidfire always points to list of surveys are called question groups. Admin can manage surveys, and any user cannot administer can see list of surveys.
  2. Optionally, each survey can by answered by visiting this path:


    You can distribute this url so that survey takers can answer a particular survey of your interest.

Survey Results

A new api is released which helps in seeing results for each survey. The api is:

  GET /rapidfire/surveys/<survey-id>/results

This new api supports two formats: html and json. The json format is supported so that end user can use any javascript based chart solutions and render results in the format they pleased. An example can be seen here, which uses chart.js to display results.

Diving into details of json format, all the questions can be categorized into one of the two categories: 1. aggregatable: questions like checkboxes, selects, radio buttons fall into this category. 2. non-aggregatable: questions like long answers, short answers, date, numeric etc.

All the aggregatable answers will be returned in the form of hash, and the non-aggregatable answers will be returned in the form of an array. A typical json output will be like this:

    "question_type": "Rapidfire::Questions::Radio",
    "question_text": "Who is author of Waiting for godot?",
    "results": {
        "Sublime": 1,
        "Emacs": 1,
        "Vim": 1
    "question_type": "Rapidfire::Questions::Checkbox",
    "question_text": "Best rock band?",
    "results": {
        "Led Zeppelin": 2
    "question_type": "Rapidfire::Questions::Date",
    "question_text": "When is your birthday?",
    "results": [
    "question_type": "Rapidfire::Questions::Long",
    "question_text": "If Apple made a android phone what it will be called?",
    "results": [
    "question_type": "Rapidfire::Questions::Numeric",
    "question_text": "Answer of life, universe and everything?",
    "results": [
    "question_type": "Rapidfire::Questions::Select",
    "question_text": "Places you want to visit after death",
    "results": {
        "Iran": 2

How it works

This gem gives you access to create questions in a groups, something similar to survey. Once you have created a group and add questions to it, you can pass around the form url where others can answer your questions.

The typical flow about how to use this gem is:

  1. Create a question group by giving it a name.
  2. Once group is created, you can click on the group which takes you to another page where you can manage questions.
  3. Create a question by clicking on add new, and you will be provided by these options: Each question will have a type

    • Checkbox Create a question which contains multiple checkboxes with the options that you provide in answer options field. Note that each option should be on a separate line.
    • Date It takes date as an answer
    • Long It needs a description as answer. Renders a textarea.
    • Numeric It takes a number as an answer
    • Radio It renders set of radio buttons by taking answer options.
    • Select It renders a dropdown by taking answer options.
    • Short It takes a string as an answer. Short answer.
  4. Once the type is filled, you can optionally fill other details like

    • Question text What is the question?
    • Answer options Give options separated by newline for questions of type checkbox, radio buttons or select.
    • Answer presence Should you mandate answering this question?
    • min and max length Checks whether answer if in between min and max length. Ignores if blank.
    • greater than and less than Applicable for numeric question where answer is validated with these values.
  5. Once the questions are populated, you can return to root_path ie by clicking Surveys and share distribute answer url so that others can answer the questions populated.

  6. Note that answers fail to persist of the criteria that you have provided while creating questions fail.

Notes on upgrading

Upgrading from 2.1.0 to 3.0.0

If you are upgrading you need to rename your rapidfire_question_groups to rapidfire_surveys and rapidfire_answer_groups to rapidfire_attempts. Run the given task to do that for you.

    $ rake rapidfire:upgrade:migrations:from210to300
Upgrading from 1.2.0 to 2.0.0

The default delimiter which is used to store options for questions like select input, multiple answers for checkbox question is comma (,). This resulted in problems where gem is unable to parse options properly if answers also contain commas. For more information see issue-19.

Starting from version 2.0.0 default delimiter is changed to \r\n, but a configuration is provided to change the delimiter. Please run this rake task to make existing questions or stored answers to use new delimiter.

NOTE: Please take database backup before running this rake task.

  bundle exec rake rapidfire:change_delimiter_from_comma_to_srsn
  bundle exec rake rapidfire:change_delimiter_from_comma_to_srsn

If you dont want to make this change rightaway, and would like to use comma as delimiter, then please use this initializer, but be warned that in future delimiter will be hardcoded to \r\n:

  # /<path-to-app>/config/initializers/rapidfire.rb

  Rapidfire.config do |config|
    config.answers_delimiter = ','


  1. Add ability to sort questions, so that order is preserved.
  2. Add multi tenant support.


  1. Fork it
  2. Create your feature branch (git checkout -b my-new-feature)
  3. Commit your changes (git commit -am 'Add some feature')
  4. Push to the branch (git push origin my-new-feature)
  5. Create new Pull Request