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RE: regex variable

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  • John Beckett
    ... No (I assume you want different regex syntax, probably PCRE). Tony s post is talking about a new Vim regex engine intended to be fully compatible with the
    Message 1 of 23 , Jul 18, 2013
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      shawn wilson wrote:
      > This is probably a feature request but I really do hate the
      > regex engine and would love to swap it out. Is there / can
      > there be a compile time option to use a different engine?

      No (I assume you want different regex syntax, probably PCRE).

      Tony's post is talking about a new Vim regex engine intended to
      be fully compatible with the old syntax, but faster.

      Like Vim's scripting language, Vim's regex syntax makes a lot of
      sense for editing text because they provide procedures that
      often work in an optimum way.

      John


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    • shawn wilson
      ... libpcre would be fine, yes. Or the library that Ruby uses - either way. ... Though this means there s already code for choosing between engines which is
      Message 2 of 23 , Jul 19, 2013
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        On Jul 18, 2013 11:48 PM, "John Beckett" <johnb.beckett@...> wrote:
        >
        > shawn wilson wrote:
        > > This is probably a feature request but I really do hate the
        > > regex engine and would love to swap it out. Is there / can
        > > there be a compile time option to use a different engine?
        >
        > No (I assume you want different regex syntax, probably PCRE).
        >

        libpcre would be fine, yes. Or the library that Ruby uses - either way.

        > Tony's post is talking about a new Vim regex engine intended to
        > be fully compatible with the old syntax, but faster.
        >

        Though this means there's already code for choosing between engines which is good.

        > Like Vim's scripting language, Vim's regex syntax makes a lot of
        > sense for editing text because they provide procedures that
        > often work in an optimum way.
        >

        Yeah, it looks like sed's syntax. If I'm used to writing things one way (say in code) and then hit '/' to do a similar thing inside my editor, switching mindset constantly makes me loose my thought (generally what happens) or make stupid errors like earlier in this thread.

        I guess this should be a feature request then?

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      • John Beckett
        ... Vim is strongly attached to compatibility, and is immensely complex. I would not bother requesting a new regex syntax because it won t happen. John -- --
        Message 3 of 23 , Jul 19, 2013
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          shawn wilson wrote:
          > libpcre would be fine, yes. Or the library that Ruby uses -
          > either way.
          > ...
          > I guess this should be a feature request then?

          Vim is strongly attached to compatibility, and is immensely
          complex. I would not bother requesting a new regex syntax
          because it won't happen.

          John


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        • Erik Christiansen
          ... Granted, vim s obscurely parochial regex engine has for many years been the one great failing in an otherwise stunningly good utility. But now it has the
          Message 4 of 23 , Jul 19, 2013
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            On 18.07.13 21:34, shawn wilson wrote:
            > This is probably a feature request but I really do hate the regex engine
            > and would love to swap it out. Is there / can there be a compile time
            > option to use a different engine?

            Granted, vim's obscurely parochial regex engine has for many years been
            the one great failing in an otherwise stunningly good utility. But now
            it has the \v regex prefix to provide a very good simulation of posix
            EREs, qualifying that mode as "modern regex"¹.

            It does seem ludicrous to be afflicted by a different regex dialect in
            each tool one uses, especially when awk, mutt, egrep (or grep -E), sed
            -r, vim with the \v prefix, lex (OK, it also has extensions), and other
            *nix tools _all_ use modern posix EREs, allowing users to move
            seamlessly between them, without incurring a brain hernia. EREs also
            don't suffer from the backslash storm which afflicts obsolete REs.

            Is there anything additional about vim's regex engine which troubles you?

            Does the new regex engine not address any of those concerns?
            (I freely admit to not having tried it myself yet, so cannot say what
            benefits it might have brought.)

            Incidentally, a number of years ago, I compiled vim with another regex
            suite, and the resulting EREs worked beautifully - except that vim's
            help broke. In retrospect, I guess that new helptags might have fixed
            that. In any event, roll-your-own-regex-suite didn't take long, AFAIR,
            comprising mainly some wrapper functions to handle the slightly
            different function interface.

            Erik

            ¹ See `man 7 regex`

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            to write a short one"
            - Blaise Pascal (in 1657), and later, Mark Twain.

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          • BPJ
            ... I feel the same sometimes, as I code Perl in Vim on a daily basis, but Vim s (old) regex engine/syntax actually allows useful things which are impossible
            Message 5 of 23 , Jul 19, 2013
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              2013-07-19 09:59, shawn wilson skrev:
              > On Jul 18, 2013 11:48 PM, "John Beckett" <johnb.beckett@...> wrote:
              >>
              >> shawn wilson wrote:
              >>> This is probably a feature request but I really do hate the
              >>> regex engine and would love to swap it out. Is there / can
              >>> there be a compile time option to use a different engine?
              >>
              >> No (I assume you want different regex syntax, probably PCRE).
              >>
              >
              > libpcre would be fine, yes. Or the library that Ruby uses - either way.

              > Yeah, it looks like sed's syntax. If I'm used to writing things one way
              > (say in code) and then hit '/' to do a similar thing inside my editor,
              > switching mindset constantly makes me loose my thought (generally what
              > happens) or make stupid errors like earlier in this thread.

              I feel the same sometimes, as I code Perl in Vim on a daily
              basis, but Vim's (old) regex engine/syntax actually allows useful
              things which are impossible or hard inn Perl, not only the other
              way around. And I can always filter through a perl oneliner if I
              want to use perl's regex engine. Can't you do the same with Ruby?
              Vim regexes come closer to Perl's if you use of \v and so that
              ought to bring you closer to PCRE too unless the "PC" is now only
              an historical leftover (I haven't looked at the specs in a long
              time, but hey) The only thing I regularly miss in Vim regexes is
              \Q...\E. \V...\v comes close, although you still have to escape
              your backslashes under \V.

              So I guess I should file a feature request for support of \Q,
              although someone probably has already...

              /bpj

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            • Nikolay Pavlov
              ... To have this a way to embed variable is needed in first place. Otherwise you would need to escape E which can only be done with a more complex (compared
              Message 6 of 23 , Jul 19, 2013
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                On Jul 19, 2013 5:49 PM, "BPJ" <bpj@...> wrote:
                >
                > 2013-07-19 09:59, shawn wilson skrev:
                >
                >> On Jul 18, 2013 11:48 PM, "John Beckett" <johnb.beckett@...> wrote:
                >>>
                >>>
                >>> shawn wilson wrote:
                >>>>
                >>>> This is probably a feature request but I really do hate the
                >>>> regex engine and would love to swap it out. Is there / can
                >>>> there be a compile time option to use a different engine?
                >>>
                >>>
                >>> No (I assume you want different regex syntax, probably PCRE).
                >>>
                >>
                >> libpcre would be fine, yes. Or the library that Ruby uses - either way.
                >
                >
                >> Yeah, it looks like sed's syntax. If I'm used to writing things one way
                >> (say in code) and then hit '/' to do a similar thing inside my editor,
                >> switching mindset constantly makes me loose my thought (generally what
                >> happens) or make stupid errors like earlier in this thread.
                >
                >
                > I feel the same sometimes, as I code Perl in Vim on a daily
                > basis, but Vim's (old) regex engine/syntax actually allows useful
                > things which are impossible or hard inn Perl, not only the other
                > way around. And I can always filter through a perl oneliner if I
                > want to use perl's regex engine. Can't you do the same with Ruby?
                > Vim regexes come closer to Perl's if you use of \v and so that
                > ought to bring you closer to PCRE too unless the "PC" is now only
                > an historical leftover (I haven't looked at the specs in a long
                > time, but hey) The only thing I regularly miss in Vim regexes is
                > \Q...\E. \V...\v comes close, although you still have to escape
                > your backslashes under \V.
                >
                > So I guess I should file a feature request for support of \Q,
                > although someone probably has already...

                To have this a way to embed variable is needed in first place. Otherwise you would need to escape \E which can only be done with a more complex (compared to escape()) substitute() call or a new function. AFAIR embedding variables was indeed requested.

                The thing I constantly miss in vim RE engine is unicode and locales support.

                > /bpj
                >
                >
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              • Ben Fritz
                ... For searching it s not possible to use a different syntax, but you can easily do it for substitution via :perldo, :rubydo, :luado, etc. That is, if you
                Message 7 of 23 , Jul 19, 2013
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                  On Friday, July 19, 2013 8:49:34 AM UTC-5, BPJ wrote:
                  > 2013-07-19 09:59, shawn wilson skrev:
                  >
                  > > On Jul 18, 2013 11:48 PM, "John Beckett" <johnb.beckett@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > >>
                  >
                  > >> shawn wilson wrote:
                  >
                  > >>> This is probably a feature request but I really do hate the
                  >
                  > >>> regex engine and would love to swap it out. Is there / can
                  >
                  > >>> there be a compile time option to use a different engine?
                  >
                  >
                  > I can always filter through a perl oneliner if I
                  >
                  > want to use perl's regex engine. Can't you do the same with Ruby?
                  >

                  For searching it's not possible to use a different syntax, but you can easily do it for substitution via :perldo, :rubydo, :luado, etc. That is, if you have your Vim compiled with support for your language of choice.

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                • shawn wilson
                  Just to be clear, I mentioned Ruby because don t like libpcre as much and haven t used ruby enough for Oniguruma (http://www.geocities.jp/kosako3/oniguruma/)
                  Message 8 of 23 , Jul 19, 2013
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                    Just to be clear, I mentioned Ruby because don't like libpcre as much
                    and haven't used ruby enough for Oniguruma
                    (http://www.geocities.jp/kosako3/oniguruma/) to piss me off and afaik,
                    there would be no detatching perl's regex engine from perl. So it was
                    more of a comment of "I know these exist, would it be a good thing to
                    have and a decent feature request to have the ability to compile other
                    regex eingines in".

                    On Fri, Jul 19, 2013 at 10:02 AM, Ben Fritz <fritzophrenic@...> wrote:

                    >
                    > For searching it's not possible to use a different syntax, but you can easily do it for substitution via :perldo, :rubydo, :luado, etc. That is, if you have your Vim compiled with support for your language of choice.
                    >

                    That's awesome, no more dropping out of vim to do a perl -ne. Not what
                    I'm looking for here, but awesome none-the-less.

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                  • BPJ
                    ... Perl s Q not only quotes interpolated variables, but also any metacharacters, so that Q[] E is equivalent to [ ], which is useful when searching for
                    Message 9 of 23 , Jul 19, 2013
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                      2013-07-19 16:00, Nikolay Pavlov skrev:
                      > On Jul 19, 2013 5:49 PM, "BPJ" <bpj@...> wrote:
                      >>
                      >> 2013-07-19 09:59, shawn wilson skrev:
                      >>
                      >>> On Jul 18, 2013 11:48 PM, "John Beckett" <johnb.beckett@...> wrote:
                      >>>>
                      >>>>
                      >>>> shawn wilson wrote:
                      >>>>>
                      >>>>> This is probably a feature request but I really do hate the
                      >>>>> regex engine and would love to swap it out. Is there / can
                      >>>>> there be a compile time option to use a different engine?
                      >>>>
                      >>>>
                      >>>> No (I assume you want different regex syntax, probably PCRE).
                      >>>>
                      >>>
                      >>> libpcre would be fine, yes. Or the library that Ruby uses - either way.
                      >>
                      >>
                      >>> Yeah, it looks like sed's syntax. If I'm used to writing things one way
                      >>> (say in code) and then hit '/' to do a similar thing inside my editor,
                      >>> switching mindset constantly makes me loose my thought (generally what
                      >>> happens) or make stupid errors like earlier in this thread.
                      >>
                      >>
                      >> I feel the same sometimes, as I code Perl in Vim on a daily
                      >> basis, but Vim's (old) regex engine/syntax actually allows useful
                      >> things which are impossible or hard inn Perl, not only the other
                      >> way around. And I can always filter through a perl oneliner if I
                      >> want to use perl's regex engine. Can't you do the same with Ruby?
                      >> Vim regexes come closer to Perl's if you use of \v and so that
                      >> ought to bring you closer to PCRE too unless the "PC" is now only
                      >> an historical leftover (I haven't looked at the specs in a long
                      >> time, but hey) The only thing I regularly miss in Vim regexes is
                      >> \Q...\E. \V...\v comes close, although you still have to escape
                      >> your backslashes under \V.
                      >>
                      >> So I guess I should file a feature request for support of \Q,
                      >> although someone probably has already...
                      >
                      > To have this a way to embed variable is needed in first place. Otherwise
                      > you would need to escape \E which can only be done with a more complex

                      Perl's \Q not only quotes interpolated variables,
                      but also any metacharacters, so that \Q[]\E is equivalent to \[\],
                      which is useful when searching for perl variables...

                      The way Perl's \Q does (not) interact with \\E is indeed annoying

                      > (compared to escape()) substitute() call or a new function. AFAIR embedding
                      > variables was indeed requested.

                      Some syntax for that, like \%{varname} could be added to Vim.

                      >
                      > The thing I constantly miss in vim RE engine is unicode and locales support.

                      Yeah, but I've kind of resigned to the lack of it, but it would be
                      nice to get rid of the shenanigans I use to make up, for sure!

                      BTW I'm on a UTF-8 locale, so I seldom need (other) locales.

                      >
                      >> /bpj
                      >>
                      >>
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                    • BPJ
                      ... I actually prefer :!perl ... since that way I can use a current version of perl without building vim myself. /bpj -- -- You received this message from the
                      Message 10 of 23 , Jul 19, 2013
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                        2013-07-19 16:02, Ben Fritz skrev:
                        > For searching it's not possible to use a different syntax, but you can easily do it for substitution via :perldo, :rubydo, :luado, etc. That is, if you have your Vim compiled with support for your language of choice.

                        I actually prefer :!perl ... since that way I can use a current
                        version of perl without building vim myself.

                        /bpj

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                      • Nikolay Pavlov
                        ... is useful when searching for perl variables... ... embedding ... support. ... to get rid of the shenanigans I use to make up, for sure! ... You missed the
                        Message 11 of 23 , Jul 19, 2013
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                          On Jul 19, 2013 6:37 PM, "BPJ" <bpj@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > 2013-07-19 16:00, Nikolay Pavlov skrev:
                          >
                          >> On Jul 19, 2013 5:49 PM, "BPJ" <bpj@...> wrote:
                          >>>
                          >>>
                          >>> 2013-07-19 09:59, shawn wilson skrev:
                          >>>
                          >>>> On Jul 18, 2013 11:48 PM, "John Beckett" <johnb.beckett@...> wrote:
                          >>>>>
                          >>>>>
                          >>>>>
                          >>>>> shawn wilson wrote:
                          >>>>>>
                          >>>>>>
                          >>>>>> This is probably a feature request but I really do hate the
                          >>>>>> regex engine and would love to swap it out. Is there / can
                          >>>>>> there be a compile time option to use a different engine?
                          >>>>>
                          >>>>>
                          >>>>>
                          >>>>> No (I assume you want different regex syntax, probably PCRE).
                          >>>>>
                          >>>>
                          >>>> libpcre would be fine, yes. Or the library that Ruby uses - either way.
                          >>>
                          >>>
                          >>>
                          >>>> Yeah, it looks like sed's syntax. If I'm used to writing things one way
                          >>>> (say in code) and then hit '/' to do a similar thing inside my editor,
                          >>>> switching mindset constantly makes me loose my thought (generally what
                          >>>> happens) or make stupid errors like earlier in this thread.
                          >>>
                          >>>
                          >>>
                          >>> I feel the same sometimes, as I code Perl in Vim on a daily
                          >>> basis, but Vim's (old) regex engine/syntax actually allows useful
                          >>> things which are impossible or hard inn Perl, not only the other
                          >>> way around. And I can always filter through a perl oneliner if I
                          >>> want to use perl's regex engine. Can't you do the same with Ruby?
                          >>> Vim regexes come closer to Perl's if you use of \v and so that
                          >>> ought to bring you closer to PCRE too unless the "PC" is now only
                          >>> an historical leftover (I haven't looked at the specs in a long
                          >>> time, but hey) The only thing I regularly miss in Vim regexes is
                          >>> \Q...\E. \V...\v comes close, although you still have to escape
                          >>> your backslashes under \V.
                          >>>
                          >>> So I guess I should file a feature request for support of \Q,
                          >>> although someone probably has already...
                          >>
                          >>
                          >> To have this a way to embed variable is needed in first place. Otherwise
                          >> you would need to escape \E which can only be done with a more complex
                          >
                          >
                          > Perl's \Q not only quotes interpolated variables,
                          > but also any metacharacters, so that \Q[]\E is equivalent to \[\], which is useful when searching for perl variables...
                          >
                          > The way Perl's \Q does (not) interact with \\E is indeed annoying
                          >
                          >
                          >> (compared to escape()) substitute() call or a new function. AFAIR embedding
                          >> variables was indeed requested.
                          >
                          >
                          > Some syntax for that, like \%{varname} could be added to Vim.
                          >
                          >
                          >>
                          >> The thing I constantly miss in vim RE engine is unicode and locales support.
                          >
                          >
                          > Yeah, but I've kind of resigned to the lack of it, but it would be nice to get rid of the shenanigans I use to make up, for sure!
                          >
                          > BTW I'm on a UTF-8 locale, so I seldom need (other) locales.

                          You missed the point of locales. It is not about encoding, it is about language and affects ranges (what characters match a-z range depends on language you set in your locale) and a big bunch of other things I do not care about. Ranges matter for me only because ё (CYRILLIC ... LETTER IO) is not in range а-я (CYRILLIC ... LETTER A-YA), while it must be there if you are talking about Russian alphabet. For locales not to break scripts and degrade performance new regex flag have to be introduced. Python has this support, and it has it with additional flag. Do not remember about perl.

                          Also note that range а-я is utterly broken with &enc set to KOI8-R.

                          >
                          >>
                          >>> /bpj
                          >>>
                          >>>
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                        • BPJ
                          ... I know, but I usually deal with languages that are so exotic or so extinct that there are no locales for them, or with such philologists tics like
                          Message 12 of 23 , Jul 19, 2013
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                            2013-07-19 17:40, Nikolay Pavlov skrev:
                            > You missed the point of locales. It is not about encoding, it is about
                            > language and affects ranges (what characters match a-z range depends on
                            > language you set in your locale) and a big bunch of other things I do not
                            > care about.

                            I know, but I usually deal with languages that are so exotic or so
                            extinct that there are no locales for them, or with such
                            philologists' tics like typesetting a language in romanization,
                            yet sort it as if it were in the native script. There ain't no
                            locales for that either. I'm just happy that I can get UTF-8
                            I/O out of the box and that there are tools to do such sorting,
                            but for the most part I've had to write my own tools. Luckily
                            user-defined character properties can make up for missing ranges
                            to a degree.
                            (<https://metacpan.org/module/perlunicode#User-Defined-Character-Properties>),
                            and ack as grepprg goes a long
                            way towards having unicode-aware searching in vim.

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