[rspec-users] Name collision - how would you handle this?

Ashley Moran ashley.moran at patchspace.co.uk
Sat Aug 7 17:37:50 EDT 2010

On 7 Aug 2010, at 22:10, David Chelimsky wrote:

> So - what should we do? I don't think changing Minitest is really an option, as too many assertion libraries already wrap Minitest assertions. I don't think RSpec should be in the business of monitoring methods end-users define to make sure they're not overriding pre-existing methods (what if you override a method intentionally?). The only thing I'm left with is document this particular case and hope for the best, but that feels unsatisfactory as well.

While I fully agree if you `def` a method that already exists, you should be expected to deal with it yourself (that's just the way things are in Ruby), does the same apply to `let`?  I can actually see an argument that you should only be able to `let` a method that doesn't already exist, and also only do it once (which is just a consequence of not being able to override a method, given the current implementation).

Can you think of any downsides of preventing RSpec users from overriding existing methods with `let`?  Are there any popular names already taken?  Or other problems?

To me, `let` is magic.  I don't think of it, first and foremost, of defining a method. I see the things it creates as more like local variables, and just remind myself that they're methods if I wonder why it works.

I'm not sold either way on this, but I think it's one worth a debate.



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