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syntax - What does map(&:name) mean in Ruby?

I found this code in a RailsCast:

def tag_names
  @tag_names || tags.map(&:name).join(' ')
end

What does the (&:name) in map(&:name) mean?


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It's shorthand for tags.map(&:name.to_proc).join(' ')

If foo is an object with a to_proc method, then you can pass it to a method as &foo, which will call foo.to_proc and use that as the method's block.

The Symbol#to_proc method was originally added by ActiveSupport but has been integrated into Ruby 1.8.7. This is its implementation:

class Symbol
  def to_proc
    Proc.new do |obj, *args|
      obj.send self, *args
    end
  end
end

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