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Even when interpreted, the logic isn’t always easy to follow.
Regular Expressions were never developed to be easy to understand.
They are a condensed shorthand that, on preliminary inspection, looks as if someone has repeatedly sat on the keyboard.
Let’s start off with something simple, a function for testing a string against a regular expression: if there is an error).
When using this for validating user input, you’ll normally want to check if the entire string matches the regular expression.
You can find many pre-made expressions out there, which can be very useful to you.
Here is an example where we require a 4 digit number - nothing else is acceptable: The only new attribute we use, is the validationexpression.
(there is no option to make the dot match line break characters).
Only the Ignore Case is relevant in the first function but we’ve ‘hardcoded’ it to 1 as case-sensitive searches are a minority interest.
As always, the source code is available to download at the bottom of the article.
Regular Expressions can be very useful to the Database programmer, particularly for data validation, data feeds and data transformations.
On the contrary, regular expresssions aren’t always portable and there are many common, similar but incompatible, dialects in use, such as Perl 5.8, regex, .