Filter data with scopes

As we saw in the previous chapter, weppy allows you to write queries easily using python objects.

Still, sometimes, it might be handy to have some shortcuts for the queries we write more often in our application, or to have some helpers that allow us to write less code.

In order to address this need, weppy implements scopes, special methods inside models that will be bound to models themselves and to sets matching the involved tables.

But how do they work?
Let's say, for example, that you're writing some blog application, where every post can be in a different state, like when is just a draft, or is published, or maybe retired. Let's say that you're mapping this state with an integer column, and you're ending up with a model like this:

class Post(Model):
    title = Field()
    body = Field.text()
    created_at = Field.datetime()
    changed_at = Field.datetime()
    state =

    STATES = {'draft': 0, 'published': 1, 'retired': 2}

    validation = {
        'state': {'in': {
            'set': list(STATES.values()), 
            'labels': list(STATES)}}

Now, if you often works with published posts, you will probably ending up writing a lot of lines like this:

db((Post.state == 0) & (...))
# or
db(Post.state == Post.STATES['published']).where(...)

And since this can be quite annoying, you can write a scope in your model:

from weppy.orm import scope

class Post(Model):
    def filter_published(self):
        return self.state == self.STATES['published']

as you can see the scope we just write is a method returning the query we need to be applied. Now, we are able to use it as a method with the name we specified in the argument of the scope decorator:

>>> Post.published()
<Set (posts.state = 1)>
>>> db(Post.created_at >= datetime(2016, 1, 15)).published()
<Set ((posts.created_at >= '2016-01-15 00:00:00') AND (posts.state = 1))>
>>> Post.published().where(Post.created_at >= datetime(2015, 12, 10))
<Set ((posts.state = 1) AND (posts.created_at >= '2015-12-10 00:00:00'))>

As you can see you can use scopes on the model classes and on Set object for the model table, and combine them with other query conditions.

Scopes with arguments

Since scopes are methods, they can obviously accepts arguments. This becomes quite handy when you want to use scopes to build often used queries with some variables.

Considering the posts example we've seen above, if you often works with time and date ranges, then repeatedly writing this:

   (Post.created_at >= datetime(2016, 1, 15)) &
   (Post.created_at < datetime(2016, 1, 16))

can be uncomfortable. You can instead write a scope for that:

class Post(Model):
    def filter_between(self, start, end):
        return (self.created_at >= start) & (self.created_at < end)

Then in your application code you can write the cleaner:

Post.between(datetime(2016, 1, 15), datetime(2015, 1, 16))

Using arguments in scopes can be handy also when you want to keep your routed functions cleaner and keep the filtering logic into the models. Let's consider another example and suppose that you're writing a todo manager application where you want to allow the filtering of the todos with a query parameter for a specific state of the todos. Given the model:

class Todo(Model):
    action = Field()
    done = Field.bool()
    overdue_at = Field.datetime()

we want to make available these states using a filter query parameter:

  • done for the completed todos
  • overdue for the todos with an overdue date prior than now
  • upcoming for the todos with an overdue date in the next 7 days

Then we can add to our model:

from datetime import timedelta
from weppy import request

class Todo(Model):
    permitted_filters = ['done', 'overdue', 'upcoming']

    def filter_by_state(self, state):
        if state == 'done':
            return self.done == True
        elif state == 'overdue':
            return self.overdue_at <
        elif state == 'upcoming':
            d =
            return (self.overdue_at >= d+timedelta(days=1)) & \
                (self.overdue_at < d+timedelta(days=7))

and write down a routing function like this:

from weppy import request

def todos():
    dbset = Todo.all()
    if request.params.filter in Todo.permitted_filters:
        dbset = dbset.with_state(request.params.filter)
    return {'todos':}

then your can provide filtering just using the urls:

  • /todos?filter=done
  • /todos?filter=overdue
  • /todos?filter=upcoming

Combining scopes

Scopes can be combined to build a Set corresponding to the intersection of their queries, so that the resulting set of records will be the same of concatenating queries with the & operator.

Considering back the posts example we given before, you can write:

    datetime(2016, 1, 15), datetime(2016, 1, 16))

that will produce the same result of writing the respective queries:

    lambda p: 
        (p.state == Post.STATES['published']) &
        (p.created_at >= datetime(2015, 1, 15)) &
        (p.created_at < datetime(2015, 1, 16))