lu4nm3 / nextime

Work with cron expressions to figure out the "next time" something should occur.

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Nextime is a library for Scala that helps you figure out the "next time" something should occur by providing an easy and type safe way to work with cron expressions.

Guide

  1. Installation
  2. Expressions
  3. Time
  4. Errors

Installation

Latest version: Maven

In your build.sbt file, add the following:

libraryDependencies += "io.kleisli" %% "nextime" % "version"

And then simply import nextime into your project:

import nextime._

Quick Start

import nextime._

val minute = Minute(0)
val hour = Hour(3)
val dayOfMonth = DayOfMonth(11)
val month = Month(4)
val dayOfWeek = DayOfWeek(?)

Cron(minute, hour, dayOfMonth, month, dayOfWeek) // Either[nextime.Error, Cron]

Expressions

You can think of cron expressions as being made up of several multipart expressions (ie. second, minute, hour, etc) which in turn are made up of 1 or more part expressions.

Cron Expressions

The Cron type uses smart constructors to create instances of Either[nextime.Error, Cron] to account for the possibility of errors in the cron expression:

val cron: Either[nextime.Error, Cron] = Cron(minute, hour, dayOfMonth, month, dayOfWeek)

Only 3 permutations of multipart expressions are supported in a cron expression:

Permutation Second Minute Hour Day of Month Month Day of Week Year
#1
#2
#3

You can also build a Cron expression directly from a string representation using a constructor:

val cron: Either[nextime.Error, Cron] = Cron("0 3 11 4 ?")

As well as the cron string interpolator:

val cron: Either[nextime.Error, Cron] = cron"0 3 11 4 ?"

And you can get back the string representation of a cron expression using mkString:

cron.map(_.mkString) // Right("0 3 11 4 ?")

If you're feeling adventurous, you can use the unsafe version of these constructors which will return a Cron value directly:

val cron1: Cron = Cron.unsafe(minute, hour, dayOfMonth, month, dayOfWeek)

val cron2: Cron = Cron.unsafe("0 3 11 4 ?")

val cron3: Cron = ucron"0 3 11 4 ?"

Just be careful as the unsafe constructors will throw exceptions when a cron expression is invalid:

scala> Cron.unsafe("0 3 -11 4 ?")
nextime.Error$UniqueError:
{
    "message" : "Invalid cron expression",
    "cause" : {
        "message" : "Invalid day of month expression",
        "cause" : {
            "message" : "Numeric values must be between 1 and 31",
            "cause" : "-11 is out of bounds"
        }
    }
}
  at nextime.Error$.apply(Error.scala:53)
  at nextime.Error$.apply(Error.scala:45)
  ...

Read more about cron errors in the section below.

Multipart Expressions

A multipart expression is one of Second, Minute, Hour, DayOfMonth, Month, DayOfWeek, and Year. When you use them together in one of the predefined permutations, you can create a Cron expression:

Cron(Minute(...), Hour(...), DayOfMonth(...), Month(...), DayOfWeek(...))

Multipart expressions are made up of at least 1 or more part expressions, hence why they are "multipart". And just like with Cron expressions, multipart expressions use smart constructors to encapsulate the possibility of having errors:

val second: Either[nextime.Error, Second] = Second(*)

val minute: Either[nextime.Error, Minute] = Minute(3, 21, 56)

val hour: Either[nextime.Error, Hour] = Hour(17)

In addition, you can build multipart expressions from their string representation using a constructor:

val second: Either[nextime.Error, Second] = Second("*")

val minute: Either[nextime.Error, Minute] = Minute("3,21,56")

val hour: Either[nextime.Error, Hour] = Hour("17")

As well as their respective string interpolators (sec, min, hr, dom, mon, dow, yr):

val second: Either[nextime.Error, Second] = sec"*"

val minute: Either[nextime.Error, Minute] = min"3,21,56"

val hour: Either[nextime.Error, Hour] = hr"17"

The parts that you can use in a multipart expression vary. Every multipart expression has a lower and upper bounds on the values that you're allowed to use and not all of them support the same part expressions:

Multipart Expression Allowed Values Allowed Parts (where X is a numeric value)
Second 0-59 * - /
Minute 0-59 * - /
Hour 0-23 * - /
Day of Month 1-31 * - / ? L L-X XW LW
Month 1-12 or JAN-DEC * - /
Day of Week 1-7 or SUN-SAT * - / ? L XL X#X
Year 1970-2099 * - /

Much like Cron, multipart expressions provide unsafe constructors to build instances directly:

val second: Second = Second.unsafe(*)

val minute: Minute = Minute.unsafe("3,21,56")

val hour: Hour = Hour.unsafe(17)

val dayOfMonth: DayOfMonth = udom"11"

And if used on an invalid multipart expression, an exception will be thrown:

scala> Hour.unsafe(-3)
nextime.Error$UniqueError:
{
    "message" : "Invalid hour expression",
    "cause" : {
        "message" : "Numeric values must be between 0 and 23",
        "cause" : "-3 is out of bounds"
    }
}
  at nextime.Error$.apply(Error.scala:53)
  at nextime.Error$.apply(Error.scala:45)
  ...

Part Expressions

Part expressions are the lowest level building block for cron expressions. Nextime supports all of the same expressions as the Java Quartz library through a series of custom types. It also provides shorthand versions of these types for convenience.

Symbol Type Shorthand English
* All * All possible values for the given field
3 Value(3) 3 The value 3
1-3 Range(1, 3) 1 ~- 3 The values 1, 2, and 3
1/3
/3
Increment(1, 3)
Increment(3)
1 ~/ 3
~/(3)
The values 1, 4, 7, ... up to the upper bound of the given field.
The values 0, 3, 6, ... up to the upper bound of the given field
? NoValue ? Ignore the day-of-month OR the day-of-week but NOT both
L Last L The last day of the month OR the last day of the week (Saturday)
3L LastDayOfMonth(3) 3.L The last Tuesday of the month
L-3 LastOffset(3) L-3 The third to last day of the month
3W Weekday(3) 3.W The nearest weekday to the 3rd of the month
LW LastWeekday LW The last weekday of the month
1#3 NthXDayOfMonth(1, 3) 1 ~# 3 The third Sunday (1 = Sunday) of the month

Time

Nextime supports a couple of ways to work with time using cron expressions.

Given a Cron expression and a particular point in time:

import org.joda.time.DateTime
import org.joda.time.DateTimeZone
import nextime._

val cron = Cron("0 0 3 11 4 ? *")
val dateTime = new DateTime(2018, 4, 11, 3, 0, DateTimeZone.forID("America/Los_Angeles"))

You can use the next method to find the next time it will be triggered:

cron.map(_.next(dateTime)) // Right(Some(2019-04-11T03:00:00.000-07:00))

Similarly, you can use the previous method to find the last time that a cron expression was triggered:

cron.map(_.previous(dateTime)) // Right(Some(2017-04-11T03:00:00.000-07:00))

You'll notice that the return type for both was an Option[DateTime] which represents the possibility that there are no past or future date times that match the cron expression:

val cron = Cron("0 0 3 11 4 ? 2018")

cron.map(_.next(dateTime)) // Right(None)

cron.map(_.previous(dateTime)) // Right(None)

Note that currently Nextime only supports DateTime values from the Joda Time library. Future enhancements will extend this to support other date types.

Errors

Most of the time you're able to use types to effectively figure out which part expressions are supported by a particular multipart expression. For example, only DayOfMonth supports the LastWeekday part expression and using LastWeekday for any other multipart expression will result in a compilation error.

For the times when this isn't enough, Nextime provides an intricate error system that is used to describe issues that your cron expression and its sub-expressions may have.

You can think of nextime.Error as a recursive structure consisting of a main message describing the error along with 1 or more causes of the error. Nextime uses the Circe library to print the errors in JSON format for easier inspection.

Simple errors

As an example, let's take a look at an error generated from an invalid Minute expression:

scala> Minute(-3)
res0: Either[nextime.Error,nextime.Minute] =
Left(nextime.Error$UniqueError:
{
    "message" : "Invalid minute expression",
    "cause" : {
        "message" : "Numeric values must be between 0 and 59",
        "cause" : "-3 is out of bounds"
    }
})

Here we see that the top-level error is that we tried to create an invalid minute expression. If you look the cause of, the error, you will notice that it was due to an invalid numeric value (-3) which is out of bounds for the range of values supported by the minute expression (0-59).

Aggregate errors

It's possible to have several errors in our expression. When this happens, all of the causes for the same type of error are aggregated together.

Here we have a Minute expression containing 2 numeric values and 1 range value:

scala> Minute(-3, -46, 5 ~- 78)
res0: Either[nextime.Error,nextime.Minute] =
Left(nextime.Error$AggregateError:
{
    "message" : "Invalid minute expression",
    "cause" : [
        {
            "message" : "Numeric values must be between 0 and 59",
            "cause" : [
                "-46 is out of bounds",
                "-3 is out of bounds"
            ]
        },
        {
            "message" : "Range lower and upper values must be between 0 and 59",
            "cause" : "78 is out of bounds"
        }
    ]
})

Both numeric values are negative which makes them invalid. Since both are the same type of error, in this case an invalid numeric expression, their causes are aggregated together into a list. The range expression is also invalid because it's out of bounds. However, since this error is different from the first one (ie. it's an error having to do with an invalid range expression), it is treated as a separate type of error entirely and is thus not aggregated with the rest.

Grouped errors

When building a Cron expression, it's possible for 1 or more of the multipart expressions that make up the cron expression to have errors in them. If this happens, Nextime returns all of the multipart errors together:

scala> Cron(Minute(-3, -46, 5 ~- 78), Hour(1, 2, 3), DayOfMonth(-11), Month(0, 4, 15), DayOfWeek(?))
res0: Either[nextime.Error,nextime.Cron] =
Left(nextime.Error$AggregateError: 
{
    "message" : "Invalid cron expression",
    "cause" : [
        {
            "message" : "Invalid day of month expression",
            "cause" : {
                "message" : "Numeric values must be between 1 and 31",
                "cause" : "-11 is out of bounds"
            }
        },
        {
            "message" : "Invalid month expression",
            "cause" : {
                "message" : "Numeric values must be between 1 and 12",
                "cause" : [
                    "0 is out of bounds",
                    "15 is out of bounds"
                ]
            }
        },
        {
            "message" : "Invalid minute expression",
            "cause" : [
                {
                    "message" : "Numeric values must be between 0 and 59",
                    "cause" : [
                        "-46 is out of bounds",
                        "-3 is out of bounds"
                    ]
                },
                {
                    "message" : "Range lower and upper values must be between 0 and 59",
                    "cause" : "78 is out of bounds"
                }
            ]
        }
    ]
})

Nextime does this by using a Semigroupal to group all of the errors together which makes it much more convenient than having to constantly fix and recompile each individual error until there are no more.