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Date:         Fri, 8 Jul 2005 02:20:24 +0000
Reply-To:     toby dunn <tobydunn@HOTMAIL.COM>
Sender:       "SAS(r) Discussion" <SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
From:         toby dunn <tobydunn@HOTMAIL.COM>
Subject:      Re: fuzzy string search
Comments: To: davidlcassell@MSN.COM
In-Reply-To:  <BAY103-F18B94614E04D1134C93279B0DB0@phx.gbl>
Content-Type: text/plain; format=flowed

Well David my pearl headed friend I am not that big of a fan of Perl. Wonder if it is like when I wasn't a big fan of SQL till I reallt sat down and started to try to understand it and use it every day. Hmmm.. It is around that five year mark since I start learning SAS perhaps it is time to learn another language.

Perl, Java, C, C+, Cobol, Fortran (the lastest version), hmmm so many choices....

Toby Dunn

From: DavidL Cassell <davidlcassell@MSN.COM> Reply-To: DavidL Cassell <davidlcassell@MSN.COM> To: SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU Subject: Re: fuzzy string search Date: Thu, 7 Jul 2005 17:06:42 -0700 Jennifer_Lin@CHIRON.COM replied: >I think you may want to look into using regular expressions. There are SAS >RX functions available in SAS V8.1: RXPARSE, RXMATCH, etc... > >Apparently there are now also new Perl regular expression functions >available in SAS V9. Look up functions PRXPARSE, >PRXMATCH, PRXCHANGE, and PRXPOSN. > >PRX Function Reference: > > >These seem rather complicated unless you are already a PERL user, and I've >never used them, but they seem powerful enough to use for even the most >complicated fuzzy string searches.

No, they're really a piece of cake! Trust me!

Just because people keep saying Perl is a write-once/read-never language... :-)

Seriously, the PRX... functions are easier to learn than the RX... functions, because there is a lot more in the way of resources for the Perl regular expressions. You can go on the internet and I'll guess that you could search for and find a dozen free Perl regex tutorials in seconds.

Plus, the Perl regexen are relatively intuitive (at least for me), with basic rules like

/Jen/ matches any string with 'Jen' in it /(Jen|Jennifer)/ matches any string with 'Jen' or 'Jennifer'

If you're used to using () to group stuff in SAS, and | as a logical OR, then you're already halfway there.

HTCT (Happy To Cause Trouble), David -- David L. Cassell mathematical statistician Design Pathways 3115 NW Norwood Pl. Corvallis OR 97330

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