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Velocity - comparing to today's date

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Velocity - comparing to today's date

Ugh. I know I've asked very similar things to this before, so I feel like I should know better....but I'm having trouble comparing a date to today's date. I've successfully done this in the past with two points in time, but not when one is today's date....and that's tripping me up. Here's what I have so far. $LTD.Expiry_Date__c is a date field that comes in from Salesforce like this: "2015-11-05".

##set time zone and locale settings for date conversions

#set( $TimeZone = $date.getTimeZone().getTimeZone('America/New York') )  

#set( $locale = $date.getLocale() )

##set a calendar object

#set( $calNow = $date.getCalendar() )

#set( $calConst = $field.in($calNow) )

#set ($validCredits = [])

#if( ! $LTD.Expiry_Date__c)

#set ($discard = $validCredits.add($LTD.Compass_ID__c))

#else

##set travel credit expiry date and convert it to a date, then a calendar so we can compare later

#set($TravelCreditExpiryDate = $LTD.Expiry_Date__c)

#set($TravelCreditExpiryDate = $convert.parseDate($TravelCreditExpiryDate,'yyyy-MM-dd',$locale,$TimeZone))

#set($TravelCreditExpiryDate= $date.toCalendar($TravelCreditExpiryDate))

##compare the expiry date of the travel credit to today's date.

##if expiry date is in the future, add to valid credits list.

#if ( $calNow.compareTo($TravelCreditExpiryDate) < 0)

#set ($discard = $validCredits.add($LTD.Compass_ID__c))

#end

#end

Here is the error I get:

Cannot get email content- <div>An error occurred when procesing the email Rendered_Email_Velocity_Error_Area_?! </div> <p>Invocation of method 'compareTo' in class java.util.GregorianCalendar threw exception java.lang.ClassCastException: java.lang.String cannot be cast to java.util.Calendar near</p> <div><pre >?</pre></div>

So either my travel credit isn't being formatted properly, or my current date $calNow isn't. I think the travel credit part is right since I've used that before. So I'm guessing it's today's date. But how can I fix this?

Any ideas?

Thanks in advance.

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Level 10 - Community Moderator

Re: Velocity - comparing to today's date

It's not $calNow that's the problem, because if it were null or another non-Calendar value it wouldn't have a compareTo method at all.

The prob is certainly with your custom field remaining a String because it can't be converted. You have a condition in there that suggests it may be empty. In that empty case the Calendar conversion will fail, and in turn the compareTo will error out, but you haven't short-circuited the rest of the processing.

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12 REPLIES 12
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Level 10 - Community Moderator

Re: Velocity - comparing to today's date

It's not $calNow that's the problem, because if it were null or another non-Calendar value it wouldn't have a compareTo method at all.

The prob is certainly with your custom field remaining a String because it can't be converted. You have a condition in there that suggests it may be empty. In that empty case the Calendar conversion will fail, and in turn the compareTo will error out, but you haven't short-circuited the rest of the processing.

View solution in original post

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Level 6

Re: Velocity - comparing to today's date

Hmm....I still don't think I get it. Since my code structure is basically this (after changing to isEmpty for logic):

#if( $LTD.Expiry_Date__c.isEmpty())

#set ($discard = $validCredits.add($LTD.Compass_ID__c))

#else

##compare dates

#end

So if my first check is to see whether it's empty.....then the #else section should only be dealing with circumstances where there is a value in there, right? Since the field is a date field in Salesforce I know the output must be either empty, or yyyy-mm-dd. So why would my #else section be failing if it's only applying where the value is there?

To test this further I got the output of that field for the test lead where this is failing (using preview of the email and selecting sample lead). The field value is:

Expiry_Date__c=2015-12-15

What am I missing here.....

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Level 10 - Community Moderator

Re: Velocity - comparing to today's date

It's

America/New_York

not

America/New York

(Was on my phone before so I didn't notice this typo.)

Because of the typo, $TimeZone is never set. Thus the later use of $TimeZone in the conversion to Date fails silently, and the variable remains as-is, a String.

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Level 6

Re: Velocity - comparing to today's date

Ah, of course! Duh.

Now that is solved, I went back and modified my simple "checks based on having a value" (eg. $LTD.Amount__c) to be checking on isEmpty (eg. $LTD.Amount__c.isEmpty() ).

But here's the weird thing. Those logic checks don't seem to be working for some reason using the Preview. Here's what works:

#elseif($LTD.Type__c == "Travel Credit" && ! $LTD.Applied_To__c && $LTD.Amount__c)

And what doesn't:

#elseif($LTD.Type__c == "Travel Credit" && $LTD.Applied_To__c.isEmpty() && ! $LTD.Amount__c.isEmpty() )

I know you said above that using isEmpty is more reliable. But that's not what I'm finding in this example. Why so?

(When I output the fields of "Applied_To" and "Amount__c" for this lead it displays as "Applied_To__c=null". So the value is definitely null in there.

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Level 10 - Community Moderator

Re: Velocity - comparing to today's date

It's not that one is more reliable than the other, it's that they do totally different things.

$var.isEmpty() checks if a reference is an empty String.

!$var checks if a reference is Boolean false or null or does not exist in the Velocity context.

If you come from a background in popular dynamic languages, you might assume that !$var is false for empty Strings. Velocity sometimes is dynamically typed (or more like error-suppressing) and sometimes is strongly typed.

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Level 6

Re: Velocity - comparing to today's date

Thanks Sanford! Can you tell I never went to programming school?

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Level 10 - Community Moderator

Re: Velocity - comparing to today's date

Me neither, technically!  But I'm founding the School of Velocity. You're gonna like the next blog post, I think.

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Level 10 - Community Moderator

Re: Velocity - comparing to today's date

Also, you're testing for Boolean false, not empty. You should be using isEmpty there.

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Level 10 - Community Moderator

Re: Velocity - comparing to today's date

Phillip Wild​​ please come back to the thread and mark one of my answers as Correct (probably the one noting the typo) for future searches, thanks.