Parse Excel Files With the Ruby Gem Roo
The Logic of Parsing Excel Files
Advertisers put their content in the medium that their marketing targets use i.e. advertise on Facebook if your customers use Facebook. However, when I act as the medium between knowledge experts and a web app that delivers that expertise to users, I want those experts to collborate with me using a platform they already know. In the case of inputing data, I ask them to use an Excel sheet, and I use the Ruby gem “Roo” to get that info into a database.
Ruby Basics of Roo
Using Roo is simple:
- gem install roo
- require ‘roo’
- s = Roo::Excelx.new(“myspreadsheet.xlsx”)
- s.default_sheet = s.sheets.first
- define your attributes by column
- iterate through each row of your excel sheet, with a starting and ending row
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Other Ways of Using Roo
You can create a checklist system where Excel rows are filled with an “x” if an entry meets a column criteria. For example, if you’re tracking how many continents you’ve visited, you can put an “x” under each continent visited (such that columns B-H are Europe, Arica, etc.). You can also define your own ruby methods to transform the excel data as needed.
Roo is a simple but powerful tool for collborating with knowledge experts to build a powerful web app. Find more information at its Github to parse things like CSV and OpenOffice.