This gem provides an encoder and decoder for tinycode, which is a Bencode like encoding that supports more data-types and slightly smaller encoded sizes.

The encoder supports arrays, hashes, strings, symbols, and integers, as well as specialized fixed-width integers: Tinycode::U8, Tinycode::U16, Tinycode::U32, and Tinycode::U64. Like YAML but unlike JSON, this encoder maintains a distinction between strings and symbols.

The encoding is inspired by Bencode's tag-length-value construction for strings, which eliminates the need for escaping in Strings. This makes this encoding particularly appropriate for serializing binary strings directly.


Consider the following data structure:

  location: 'Chicago',
  currently: {
    temperature: 72,
    condition: ['Partly cloudy', 'Chance of rain']
  narrative: "High: 81, low: 56\nCooler than yesterday.",
  high: 81,
  low: 56
  location: 'New York',
  currently: {
    temperature: 45,
    condition: ['Rainy']
  narrative: "High: 56, low: -2\nWinter Weather Alert in effect.",
  high: 56,
  low: -2

The resulting structure looks something like this. In actuality, there is not this much whitespace, and the \xNN codes represent binary values.

        Partly cloudy'
        Chance of rain'
    narrative:'\x28High: 81, low: 56\nCooler than yesterday.
    location:New York'
    narrative:'\x31High: 56, low: -2\nWinter Weather Alert in effect.


Add this line to your application's Gemfile:

gem 'tinycode'

And then execute:

bundle install

Or install it yourself as:

gem install tinycode


Dumping a data structure

require 'tinycode'

['some', 'array'].tinycode
# and so on

Alternatively you can use Tinycode.dump:

# can use 'tinycode/no_core_ext' instead if class extensions are unwanted
require 'tinycode'

Tinycode.dump(['some', 'array'])
# and so on

Restoring a data structure

require 'tinycode'

Tinycode.load("+\x2A".b) # => 42
Tinycode.load("[some'array']".b) # => ['some', 'array']
# and so on


After checking out the repo, run bundle install to install dependencies. Then, run rake watch to run yard, tests, and linting on every file save.

To install this gem onto your local machine, run rake install.

To release a new version, update the version number in version.rb. Then run rake release, which will create/push a git tag for the version and publish the .gem file to rubygems.org.


All copyright rights are held by the authors as recorded in git. See the commit history for a comprehensive listing of copyright holders and copyright dates.

This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, version 3.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

See LICENSE in this repository for the full license text.