Smart-area | Angular Directives for @mentions in Textareas

smart-area angular directive

smart-area

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Forks : 10

Created by Alejandro U. Alvarez

bower install smart-area

Demo Download GitHub

smart-area

Textareas on Steroids - just adding an AngularJS directive

Features

  • Word highlighting (syntax, keywords... ) with support for multiple sets
  • Autocomplete
  • Dropdown suggestions (mention users after typing @, hashtag support, keywords... )
  • Minimal configuration required, but highly customizable if necessary

Getting started

Get a copy of smart-area either by Downloading the files, or using a package manager:

bower install --save smart-area
npm install --save smart-area

It requires jQuery to function properly at the moment, I'll try to make it depend only on jqLite so it works on vanilla Angularjs.

To setup smartArea on an element simply add the attribute:

<textarea
  name="sampleTextarea"
  id="sampleTextarea"
  class="form-control code"
  ng-model="myModel"
  ng-trim="false"
  spellcheck="false"

  smart-area="areaConfig">
</textarea>

Examples

All of these examples use the same HTML markup, only the configuration changes.

User mentions

Test in Plunkr

$scope.areaConfig = {
  dropdown: [{
      // trigger can be a string or a regexp
      // in this case this regexp should match Twitter-style @mentions
      trigger: /@([A-Za-z]+[_A-Za-z0-9]+)/gi,
      // The list() function gets called when the trigger matches
      // it should return a list of elements to be suggested
      list: function(match, callback){
        // match is the regexp return, in this case it returns
        // [0] the full match, [1] the first capture group => username
        $http.get('/fakeApi/users', {
          user: match[1]
        }).success(function(data){
          // Prepare the fake data
          var listData = data.map(function(element){
            return {
              display: element.userName, // This gets displayed in the dropdown
              item: element // This will get passed to onSelect
            };
          });
          callback(listData);
        }).error(function(err){
          console.error(err);
        });
      },
      // Function that gets called when an item is selected
      // it's return value gets added to the textarea
      onSelect: function(item){
        return item.userName;
      },
      // mode can be append or replace
      // here we want replace because the user has already typed
      // part of the username
      mode: 'replace'
    }
  ]
};

Syntax highlighter and autocompleter for a SQL editing textarea

$scope.areaConfig = {
  autocomplete: [{
      words: ['SELECT', 'UPDATE', 'DELETE', 'INSERT'],
      cssClass: 'highlight sqlMain',
      autocompleteOnSpace: true
    },
    {
      words: ['WHERE', 'FROM', 'ORDER BY', 'LIMIT', 'JOIN'],
      cssClass: 'highlight sqlQuery',
      autocompleteOnSpace: true
    },
    {
      words: ['users','messages','friends','events'],
      cssClass: 'highlight tables'
    }
  ]
};

autocompleteOnSpace sets the trigger to run even when the user hasn't started typing, so that it already suggests commands. It defaults to false, which could be useful for other words, in the example the table names.

API

The configuration options are mostly optional and have sensible defaults:

autocomplete

You can specify here sets of words that will be available on autocomplete. autocomplete expects an array of objects, each being a different autocomplete rule:

$scope.areaConfig = {
  autocomplete: [{
      words: [string | RegExp],
      cssClass: string,
      autocompleteOnSpace: boolean
    }
  ]
};
  • words is required, it must be an array of either strings or RegExp objects. If they are strings they will be available on the autocomplete dropdown, if they are regular expressions they will only be used to apply CSS classes.
  • cssClass is an optional string with classes that will be set on the elements, you can think of it as syntax highlighting.
  • autocompleteOnSpace defaults to false, it determines whether the words on the list will be suggested before the user begins typing a word.

dropdown

This element is a lot more powerful than the autocomplete, it's essentially the same concept, but with custom trigger, list function, and selection functions.

$scope.areaConfig = {
  dropdown: [{
      trigger: string | RegExp
      list: function(match, callback){} | function(callback){},
      onSelect: function(item){},
      filter: boolean,
      mode: 'replace' | 'append'
    }
  ]
};
  • trigger: This can be either a string or a RegExp. In either case, smarArea will call the list function when the user places the cursor after it.
  • list: This function gets called as soon as the trigger is found. If the trigger is a string, the only parameter will be (callback). If the trigger is a RexExp you'll get (match, callback), where match is the result of the regular expression. In both cases you must execute the callback with one parameter:
    • list() should not return anything, use the callback instead (This brings async support).
    • The data to be used by the list will be passed to callback (See the examples)
    • The format of that data is: [{display: string, data: Object}, ...]
    • data is an Object where you can pass information to the onSelect event.
  • onSelect: This function gets called when an element is selected from the dropdown. I receives the selected object that you returned on the list() function (So inside onSelect you can access item.data for you custom properties).
  • filter: Defaults to false, if set to true it will add a filtering field to the dropdown.
  • mode: Either replace or append. Use replace when you want to complete something the user is typing (i.e. user mentions). Use append when you suggest something that goes after the trigger, without removing the trigger.

CSS

The directive doesn't force any styles on the dropdown or textareas so that you can fully integrate it with your design. I would recommend using the stylesheet from the repo, and then modifiying to suit your needs.

Dropdown element

This is the only visible element created by the directive, smart-area doesn't include any styling, it only has some layouting CSS. The dropdown is generated with the following markup:

<div class="sa-dropdown">
  <input type="text" class="form-control"/>
  <ul class="dropdown-menu" role="menu" style="position:static">
    <li ng-repeat="element in dropdown.content | filter:dropdown.filter" role="presentation">
      <a href="" role="menuitem"></a>
    </li>
  </ul>
</div>

As you can see, it uses bootstrap CSS classes, so if you site uses it you'll be all set. Otherwise, create CSS styles for:

  • input.form-control
  • ul.dropdown-menu (and children)
  • ul.dropdown-menu a.active

Extras

Autogrow

If you want to have the textarea autogrow as user types I recommend using smart-area coupled with another directive. I'm using angular-elastic on a project and it works nicely with it:

Plunkr demo

<textarea
  name="sampleTextarea"
  id="sampleTextarea"
  class="form-control code"
  ng-model="myModel"
  ng-trim="false"
  spellcheck="false"

  msd-elastic // Directive for autogrowing text areas

  smart-area="areaConfig">
</textarea>

By Alejandro U. Alvarez - AGPLv3 License

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