Help with regex search-and-replace (Perl to Python)

Anthra Norell anthra.norell at
Mon Feb 8 09:30:51 CET 2010

Schif Schaf wrote:
> On Feb 7, 8:57 am, Tim Chase <python.l... at> wrote:
>> Steve Holden wrote:
>>> Really? Under what circumstances does a simple one-for-one character
>>> replacement operation fail?
>> Failure is only defined in the clarified context of what the OP
>> wants :)  Replacement operations only fail if the OP's desired
>> output from the above mess doesn't change *all* of the ]/[
>> characters, but only those with some form of parity (nested or
>> otherwise).  But if the OP *does* want all of the ]/[ characters
>> replaced regardless of contextual nature, then yes, replace is a
>> much better solution than regexps.
> I need to do the usual "pipe text through and do various search/
> replace" thing fairly often. The above case of having to replace
> brackets with braces is only one example. Simple string methods run
> out of steam pretty quickly and much of my work relies on using
> regular expressions. Yes, I try to keep focused on simplicity, and
> often regexes are the simplest solution for my day-to-day needs.
Could you post a complex case? It's a kindness to your helpers to 
simplify your case, but if the simplification doesn't cover the full 
scope of your problem you can't expect the suggestions to cover it.


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