Regular Expressions For Beginners: Lesson 1

A regular expression defines a search pattern for strings. This pattern may match one or several times or not at all for a given string. The abbreviation for regular expression is regex.

Regular expressions can helps in

  • Searching and pattern matching
  • Text replacement
  • Collecting information ( word count, no. of spaces, no. of lines)
  • Available in almost all languages (Perl, PHP, Java, .Net, JavaScript)
  • Many default operating system programs support regex ( grep, windows search). Some other programs like syntax highlighters and Eclipse Search also use regex power.

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