How to create fast database queries

Archive for February 2nd, 2010

Searching for arbitrary portions of a date

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From Stack Overflow:

I have a Ruby on Rails application with a PostgreSQL database; several tables have created_at and updated_at timestamp attributes.

When displayed, those dates are formatted in the user's locale; for example, the timestamp 2009-10-15 16:30:00.435 becomes the string 15.10.2009 - 16:30 (the date format for this example being dd.mm.yyyy - hh.mm).

The requirement is that the user must be able to search for records by date, as if they were strings formatted in the current locale.

For example, searching for 15.10.2009 would return records with dates on October 15th 2009; searching for 15.10 would return records with dates on October 15th of any year, searching for 15 would return all dates that match 15 (be it day, month or year).

The simplest solution would be just retrieve the locale string from the client, format the dates according to that string and search them using LIKE or ~ operators (the latter, as we all know, searches for POSIX regular expressions).

However, this would be not very efficient.

Let's create a sample table and see:
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Written by Quassnoi

February 2nd, 2010 at 11:00 pm

Posted in PostgreSQL