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Regular Expressions

Course Summary

Regular expressions are patterns of meta, and literal characters that when supplied to text languages and commands, will address (match or extract) desired sections of text strings. This course follows along with the O'Reilly book titled "Mastering Regular Expressions", by Jeffrey E.F. Friedl.
Regular expressions are what put the power in powerful tools like Perl, Tcl, Python, Visual C++, awk, vi, Emacs, UNIX shell commands like sed and grep, and even some interactive programs like web search engines. While most UNIX users are familiar with Regular expressions, few take the time to learn them well enough to feel fluent in their usage.
This course will go from simple regular expression use, to very complex and powerful expressions that can take the place of multiple commands, or many lines of code. We will use the various UNIX commands that accept regular expressions, as well as Perl, perhaps the most powerful of text manipulating programs. Most important is to acquire the ability to fully understand the interactions of the individual metacharacters that supply regular expression capabilities. We will try to impart this method of thinking to attendees.
Some time is spent in looking at the different 'flavors' of regular expressions available in different tools. Many examples are given for all the tools, and many 'boilerplate' type expressions are covered, which will enable attendees to become more productive immediately after this course.


Anyone with a need to manipulate, edit, or filter text files on a UNIX platform, or using regular expression enhanced programming languages on any operating system. This class can be targeted to any language.

Prerequisite Knowledge:

You must be familiar with programs that accept regular expressions.

Terminal Objectives:

Be able to use all capabilities of regular expressions in Perl, awk, Python, Visual C++, Tcl, sed, vi, ex, grep, Emacs.

Course Length:

2 Days

Course Outline:

Day 1
  • Introduction
  • Usage of expressions
  • Metacharacters and availability
Day 2
  • Writing, reading, and processing, of Expressions
  • Dynamic expressions
  • Discussion based on supplied and requested real life examples

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FAME Computer Education: 5614 Havre St. Corpus Christi, TX 78414: 956-459-(2000+476(-2))