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Basic Syntax Question, switching from Perl to Python

Posted on 2006-07-18
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Last Modified: 2010-04-16
How would I write a Python statement that is equivalent to this Perl statement?

my ($field1, $field2, $field3) = split( /\t/,  tabDelimitedFields )


Is there a way to do it in a single line, or at least in fewer than 4 lines?

Thanks!
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Question by:BerkeleyJeff
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Accepted Solution

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pepr earned 500 total points
ID: 17129172
tabDelimitedFields = 'data1\tdata2\tdata3'
field1, field2, field3 = tabDelimitedFields.split('\t')
print field1
print field2
print field3
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Expert Comment

by:pepr
ID: 17129190
But you may prefer to build a list of field data instead of putting them into the variables:

lst = tabDelimitedFields.split('\t')

print lst
print len(lst)
print lst[0]
print lst[1]
print lst[2]

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Expert Comment

by:pepr
ID: 17129232
With the list, you can easily iterate through all items in the loop:

for item in lst:
    print item

The last note, you can use also the optional argument of the split() method that says how many times the source may be splitted:

field1, field2 = tabDelimitedFields.split('\t', 1)
print field1
print field2

The field2 will contain 'data2\tdata3' in this case.
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Expert Comment

by:pepr
ID: 17129281
If you want to use the separator defined by a regular expression, then you may use the module re and the function findall() from the module.
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Expert Comment

by:RichieHindle
ID: 17129481
pepr: Did you mean re.split()?

>>> import re
>>> re.split('\t', 'data1\tdata2\tdata3')
['data1', 'data2', 'data3']
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Expert Comment

by:pepr
ID: 17130035
No. I ment the split() of the built-in string -- 2.3.6.1 String Methods in the doc. All of the examples were tested with Python 2.4.3.
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Expert Comment

by:RichieHindle
ID: 17130237
I was referring to this: "If you want to use the separator defined by a regular expression, then you may use the module re and the function findall() from the module."  I believe re.split() rather than re.findall() is what Jeff would need to use here.
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Expert Comment

by:pepr
ID: 17136037
To RichieHinde: Sorry for my last comment. Looking at your score, I should think faster and type slower next time ;-) Yes, if the separator should be the regular expression, then re.split() should be used.

Still, if the separator is '\t' or any explicit character sequence then the split() of the built-in string type is better -- in my opinion.
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Expert Comment

by:RichieHindle
ID: 17136412
pepr: "if the separator is '\t' or any explicit character sequence then the split() of the built-in string type is better" - agreed 100%!
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Author Comment

by:BerkeleyJeff
ID: 17136614
Thanks! I'm now well on my way to leaving Perl for Python.
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