Read a text file

Richard Gaskin ambassador at
Mon Jan 17 22:05:58 EST 2005

Andre Garzia wrote:
>... although I was quick to create a simple regex that 
> would parse simple CSV, it would fail for many cases

Welcome to CSV. Microsoft doesn't even implement it consistently across 
their own product line (differences in escaping, some using \" and 
others "").

The post Alex made here a while back has held up well in beta testing 
WebMerge 2.4, now in its third week of testing, and on CSV files from a 
wide variety of sources.

I don't have the url offhand (in a bit of a rush this evening), but it 
wasn't hard to find last time I looked it up.

Perhaps the best solution to CSV is to throw it in the trash and use 
FMP's excellent tab-delimited format.  Sadly, only FMP has evidenced the 
wisdom of simplicity and consistency, but they've done a wonderful 
thing:  tabs are simply disallowed in data (as is common in DB UI's 
anyway), and CRs in data are replaced with ASCII 11 (vertical tab). 
Simple, sensible, lightning fast to parse -- after I munge CSV I use 
that format internally in WebMerge for  the rest of its operations.

  Richard Gaskin
  Fourth World Media Corporation
  Rev tools and more:

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