Stripping International Characters

require "unicode" 

def strip_international_characters(utf8_string)
  Unicode.normalize_KD(utf8_string).gsub(/[^\x00-\x7F]/n, "")

strip_international_characters("Smörgåsbord") => "Smorgasbord"

Slugs ‘R Us

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Alternate Way

It is possible to use the Iconv library too, like below, but it only seems to work on BSD systems (and not Linux systems).

require "iconv""ASCII//IGNORE//TRANSLIT", "UTF-8").iconv(text)