I process a lot of tweets in real time using python and for each tweet I need to assign it in to a specific bucket. I have about 50 buckets, each with their own rules. The majority of them are simple like so

bucket_one = ['test', 'foo']
if any(x in tweet['text'] for x in bucket_one):
  tweet['bucket_one'] = 1

So the way I designed it is by having a dictionary where the key is the bucket name and the value is a list of terms that would need to be present. This way I can have 1 generic method that would assign the tweet to a bucket by looping through the dict.

My problem is that some buckets have more complicated rules like:

if 'boo' in tweet['text'] and not any(y in tweet['text'] for y in no_words):
  tweet['bucket_two'] = 1

So as you see I have a neat and elegant way (in my opinion and please challenge me if you can think of a better way) of assigning the easy buckets however there are about 10 buckets with more complex rules that differ.

Is it ok to have 1 generic method for 40 buckets and then have an individual method for each other more complex bucket? or should I just have 50 individual methods?

1 Answer 1


I think a very maintainable way would be to define functions that take a tweet and return a boolean like this:

def has_terms(*terms):
    return lambda tweet: any(term in tweet['text'] for term in terms)

def complex_rule(tweet):
    return 'boo' in tweet['text'] and not any(y in tweet['text'] for y in no_words)

Then you can set up your list of rules like this:

rules = [(has_terms('test', 'foo'), 'bucket_one'),
         (complex_rule, 'bucket_two')]

Then assigning your buckets looks like this:

for rule, bucket in rules:
     if rule(tweet):
         tweet[bucket] = 1

This makes a very clean separation between the implementation of the rules, the specification of your list of rules, and the application of the list of rules to a tweet.

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