Thursday, November 7, 2013

The best site on the web for newbies to learn Regular Expressions with simple, interactive examples

Source: (see the white arrow?)

I'm in the process of learning regular Expressions (regex). What is regex? Simply put, regex is
"a special text string for describing a search pattern. So that we can think of regular expressions as wildcards on steroids. we are probably familiar with wildcard notations such as *.txt to find all text files in a file manager. The regex equivalent is.*\.txt$." (Source)
Why do I need to learn regex? Simple. To create complex Moodle quiz questions! Here is one such Moodle question type - the Perl-Compatible Regular Expression (Preg). To use this advanced question type, you have to read and wade through's detailed help page on the Preg question type.

To write good quiz questions, I need more power, Scotty! Regex code is goobledegook to me unless I can clearly see the nuances and intricacies of the regex syntax. You also need to have a understanding of Regex basics otherwise you can end up looking pretty foolish on Stackoverflow. Case in point.

The best site for newbies to learn regex, in my humble opinion, is...drum-roll....

for these four reasons:

  1. You get to learn regex in bite-sized pieces;
  2. There are mini-quizzes to test your understanding;
  3. Each quiz question has a solution with a clear explanation
  4. I love it!
I hope this website helps you too.

Go forth and program your search strings with regex!
Frankie Kam

Other related regex links.
Regex tester
Regular Expressions Tutorial

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