cleaning up an ASCII file?

Terry Reedy tjreedy at
Wed Jun 10 16:41:27 EDT 2009

Nick Matzke wrote:
> Hi all,
> So I'm parsing an XML file returned from a database.  However, the 
> database entries have occasional non-ASCII characters, and this is 
> crashing my parsers.
> Is there some handy function out there that will schlep through a file 
> like this, and do something like fix the characters that it can 
> recognize, and delete those that it can't?  Basically, like the BBEdit 
> "convert to ASCII" menu option under "Text".

Lookup str.maketrans and str.translate, which can leave alone, replace, 
or delete each char.

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