BasicObject is the parent class of all classes in Ruby. It's an explicit blank class.

BasicObject can be used for creating object hierarchies independent of Ruby's object hierarchy, proxy objects like the Delegator class, or other uses where namespace pollution from Ruby's methods and classes must be avoided.

To avoid polluting BasicObject for other users an appropriately named subclass of BasicObject should be created instead of directly modifying BasicObject:

class MyObjectSystem < BasicObject
end

BasicObject does not include Kernel (for methods like puts) and BasicObject is outside of the namespace of the standard library so common classes will not be found without using a full class path.

A variety of strategies can be used to provide useful portions of the standard library to subclasses of BasicObject. A subclass could include Kernel to obtain puts, exit, etc. A custom Kernel-like module could be created and included or delegation can be used via method_missing:

class MyObjectSystem < BasicObject
  DELEGATE = [:puts, :p]

  def method_missing(name, *args, &block)
    super unless DELEGATE.include? name
    ::Kernel.send(name, *args, &block)
  end

  def respond_to_missing?(name, include_private = false)
    DELEGATE.include?(name) or super
  end
end

Access to classes and modules from the Ruby standard library can be obtained in a BasicObject subclass by referencing the desired constant from the root like ::File or ::Enumerator. Like method_missing, const_missing can be used to delegate constant lookup to Object:

class MyObjectSystem < BasicObject
  def self.const_missing(name)
    ::Object.const_get(name)
  end
end
Methods
#
E
I
N
Class Public methods
new()

Not documented

static VALUE
rb_obj_dummy(void)
{
    return Qnil;
}
Instance Public methods
!obj → true or false

Boolean negate.

VALUE
rb_obj_not(VALUE obj)
{
    return RTEST(obj) ? Qfalse : Qtrue;
}
obj != other → true or false

Returns true if two objects are not-equal, otherwise false.

VALUE
rb_obj_not_equal(VALUE obj1, VALUE obj2)
{
    VALUE result = rb_funcall(obj1, id_eq, 1, obj2);
    return RTEST(result) ? Qfalse : Qtrue;
}
obj == other → true or false

Equality — At the Object level, == returns true only if obj and other are the same object. Typically, this method is overridden in descendant classes to provide class-specific meaning.

Unlike ==, the equal? method should never be overridden by subclasses as it is used to determine object identity (that is, a.equal?(b) if and only if a is the same object as b):

obj = "a"
other = obj.dup

obj == other      #=> true
obj.equal? other  #=> false
obj.equal? obj    #=> true

The eql? method returns true if obj and other refer to the same hash key. This is used by Hash to test members for equality. For objects of class Object, eql? is synonymous with ==. Subclasses normally continue this tradition by aliasing eql? to their overridden == method, but there are exceptions. Numeric types, for example, perform type conversion across ==, but not across eql?, so:

1 == 1.0     #=> true
1.eql? 1.0   #=> false
VALUE
rb_obj_equal(VALUE obj1, VALUE obj2)
{
    if (obj1 == obj2) return Qtrue;
    return Qfalse;
}
obj.__id__ → integer
obj.object_id → integer

Returns an integer identifier for obj.

The same number will be returned on all calls to object_id for a given object, and no two active objects will share an id.

Note: that some objects of builtin classes are reused for optimization. This is the case for immediate values and frozen string literals.

Immediate values are not passed by reference but are passed by value: nil, true, false, Fixnums, Symbols, and some Floats.

Object.new.object_id  == Object.new.object_id  # => false
(21 * 2).object_id    == (21 * 2).object_id    # => true
"hello".object_id     == "hello".object_id     # => false
"hi".freeze.object_id == "hi".freeze.object_id # => true
VALUE
rb_obj_id(VALUE obj)
{
    /*
     *                32-bit VALUE space
     *          MSB ------------------------ LSB
     *  false   00000000000000000000000000000000
     *  true    00000000000000000000000000000010
     *  nil     00000000000000000000000000000100
     *  undef   00000000000000000000000000000110
     *  symbol  ssssssssssssssssssssssss00001110
     *  object  oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo00        = 0 (mod sizeof(RVALUE))
     *  fixnum  fffffffffffffffffffffffffffffff1
     *
     *                    object_id space
     *                                       LSB
     *  false   00000000000000000000000000000000
     *  true    00000000000000000000000000000010
     *  nil     00000000000000000000000000000100
     *  undef   00000000000000000000000000000110
     *  symbol   000SSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS0        S...S % A = 4 (S...S = s...s * A + 4)
     *  object   oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo0        o...o % A = 0
     *  fixnum  fffffffffffffffffffffffffffffff1        bignum if required
     *
     *  where A = sizeof(RVALUE)/4
     *
     *  sizeof(RVALUE) is
     *  20 if 32-bit, double is 4-byte aligned
     *  24 if 32-bit, double is 8-byte aligned
     *  40 if 64-bit
     */
    if (STATIC_SYM_P(obj)) {
        return (SYM2ID(obj) * sizeof(RVALUE) + (4 << 2)) | FIXNUM_FLAG;
    }
    else if (FLONUM_P(obj)) {
#if SIZEOF_LONG == SIZEOF_VOIDP
        return LONG2NUM((SIGNED_VALUE)obj);
#else
        return LL2NUM((SIGNED_VALUE)obj);
#endif
    }
    else if (SPECIAL_CONST_P(obj)) {
        return LONG2NUM((SIGNED_VALUE)obj);
    }
    return nonspecial_obj_id(obj);
}
foo.send(symbol [, args...]) → obj
foo.__send__(symbol [, args...]) → obj
foo.send(string [, args...]) → obj
foo.__send__(string [, args...]) → obj

Invokes the method identified by symbol, passing it any arguments specified. You can use __send__ if the name send clashes with an existing method in obj. When the method is identified by a string, the string is converted to a symbol.

class Klass
  def hello(*args)
    "Hello " + args.join(' ')
  end
end
k = Klass.new
k.send :hello, "gentle", "readers"   #=> "Hello gentle readers"
VALUE
rb_f_send(int argc, VALUE *argv, VALUE recv)
{
    return send_internal(argc, argv, recv, CALL_FCALL);
}
obj.equal?(other) → true or false

Equality — At the Object level, == returns true only if obj and other are the same object. Typically, this method is overridden in descendant classes to provide class-specific meaning.

Unlike ==, the equal? method should never be overridden by subclasses as it is used to determine object identity (that is, a.equal?(b) if and only if a is the same object as b):

obj = "a"
other = obj.dup

obj == other      #=> true
obj.equal? other  #=> false
obj.equal? obj    #=> true

The eql? method returns true if obj and other refer to the same hash key. This is used by Hash to test members for equality. For objects of class Object, eql? is synonymous with ==. Subclasses normally continue this tradition by aliasing eql? to their overridden == method, but there are exceptions. Numeric types, for example, perform type conversion across ==, but not across eql?, so:

1 == 1.0     #=> true
1.eql? 1.0   #=> false
VALUE
rb_obj_equal(VALUE obj1, VALUE obj2)
{
    if (obj1 == obj2) return Qtrue;
    return Qfalse;
}
obj.instance_eval(string [, filename [, lineno]] ) → obj
obj.instance_eval {|obj| block } → obj

Evaluates a string containing Ruby source code, or the given block, within the context of the receiver (obj). In order to set the context, the variable self is set to obj while the code is executing, giving the code access to obj's instance variables and private methods.

When instance_eval is given a block, obj is also passed in as the block's only argument.

When instance_eval is given a String, the optional second and third parameters supply a filename and starting line number that are used when reporting compilation errors.

class KlassWithSecret
  def initialize
    @secret = 99
  end
  private
  def the_secret
    "Ssssh! The secret is #{@secret}."
  end
end
k = KlassWithSecret.new
k.instance_eval { @secret }          #=> 99
k.instance_eval { the_secret }       #=> "Ssssh! The secret is 99."
k.instance_eval {|obj| obj == self } #=> true
VALUE
rb_obj_instance_eval(int argc, const VALUE *argv, VALUE self)
{
    VALUE klass = singleton_class_for_eval(self);
    return specific_eval(argc, argv, klass, self);
}
obj.instance_exec(arg...) {|var...| block } → obj

Executes the given block within the context of the receiver (obj). In order to set the context, the variable self is set to obj while the code is executing, giving the code access to obj's instance variables. Arguments are passed as block parameters.

class KlassWithSecret
  def initialize
    @secret = 99
  end
end
k = KlassWithSecret.new
k.instance_exec(5) {|x| @secret+x }   #=> 104
VALUE
rb_obj_instance_exec(int argc, const VALUE *argv, VALUE self)
{
    VALUE klass = singleton_class_for_eval(self);
    return yield_under(klass, self, rb_ary_new4(argc, argv));
}