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From Rob Weir <>
Subject Re: Space before every line
Date Fri, 29 Jun 2012 13:23:21 GMT
On Thu, Jun 28, 2012 at 12:45 PM, Armin Le Grand <> wrote:
> Rob Weir <> wrote:
>> On Thu, Jun 28, 2012 at 6:57 AM, Armin Le Grand <> wrote:
>>> Hi Kevin,
>>> Kevin Grignon <> wrote:
>>>> KG01-see comments inline.
>>>> On Thursday, June 28, 2012, Dan wrote:
>>>>> Srinivasulu Bhattaram wrote:
>>>>>> I have a text file, which has one space before every line
>>>>>> How to remove this using search and replace option
>>>>>> For carriage return or <Enter>, I learnt that we hould use
"\n" (quotes
>>>>>> not included)  and keep Regular Expressions on.
>>>>>> But I do not know what is code for space
>>>> KG01 - Why is this so complicated.  Such system language hides the power
>>>> the tool. The tool should understand natural language inputs.
>>> I already thought the same. Regular expressions are mighty, but only
>>> (guessed) 5% of the users understand it (as with many mighty things). My
>>> first idea was to add buttons which add the 'coded' entries tothe
>>> expression, e.g.: Button 'Space' adds '\n' when pressed to the text field.
>>> Same for 'Start of Line' adding '^'. Much more to be defined, may someone
>>> knowing regular expressions well list more of them.
>>> Another way would be to allow tokens like <Space> which get translated
>>> '\n' internally before using the expression, but then the user would again
>>> have to remember multiple tokens and how they are spelled (need to be
>>> valid, possible errors which need to be handled).
>>> Maybe a mix of both, press button 'Space' adds the (human readable) token
>>> <Space> which itself is not editable (represents a single character).
>>> Hmmm...
>> Have you seen what the SlickEdit coding editor has?  Here is their
>> search dialog:
>> So you can click a button to pop out a list of common RE patterns.
> Interesting. What is inserted into the text field, then? Some
> human-readable tokens, or the RE ones?

It inserts the RE codes.  So you would still need to know some RE
syntax to work with groups, etc.

The other approach -- and I think this is theoretically possible  --
is to have the user define a search pattern by example and counter
example.  But this might be too slow.

Even among programmers RE knowledge is imperfect and they sometimes
operate in unexpected ways.  So even some sort of live preview could
help, e.g., a window that shows the kind of things that will be
matched before you run your search and replace operation.


>> But this is more of an aid to someone who already understands RE's.
>> I'm not sure we can do much to make this conceptually much easier for
>> end users, since regular expressions have a certain amount of
>> essential complexity.  Or would it make sense to support more than one
>> RE variation, maybe full RE, but also DOS-style with only * and ?
>> qualifiers?
> That is what MSDEV (Developer studio) does. It allows to choose between
> 'Wildcarts' and 'Regular expression', where the first one accepts simple
> '*' placeholders. An alternative for users, but limited. Maybe a good
> compromize...
>> -Rob
>>>> Perhaps we could explore ways to provide such system-oriented syntax to the
>>>> user in the context of the task.  In other words, update the UI design to
>>>> include a way to evoke a cheat sheet, or even better, implement a way for
>>>> the user to insert syntax using natural language, with the system
>>>> interpreting behind the scenes.
>>>> I suppose this is a broader usability theme that appears throughout the
>>>> toolset. We should explore ways reduce the complexity of system-oriented
>>>> command inputs and make advanced capabilities more consumable to less
>>>> technical users.
>>>> After all, this is a tool to help people capture their thoughts and share
>>>> ideas - not a development environment.
>>>> Thoughts?
>>>>> Can any one let me know?
>>>>>> seena
>>>>>     If you are using a carriage return (shift+<Enter>) or <Enter>,
you can
>>>>> use this: "^ "   (^ followed by a space). Regular Expressions must be
>>>>> The replace box should be empty.
>>>>> Search and replace as you did using "\n" above.
>>>>> --Dan
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>>> ALG
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