Hey Scripting Guys… on Regular Expressions

A while ago I received an email from Microsoft TechNet from "Hey Scripting Guys" where they showed how to script Excel to put change the background colour of a cell depending on the value. Basically, they reinvented the wheel, as they could have used conditional formatting for the task, which would have been more efficient. I was so disgusted that I sent it off to Simon Murphy, who posted a bit of a rant on it too.

Well, this time I'm actually going to post with a bit of Kudos for them... I recently picked up my January copy of TechNet magazine, and read the Hey Scripting Guys column on using Regular Expressions (RegEx).

I've been meaning to get into RegEx for quite some time. Matt Vidas reminds me every now and then that I should, and I know that Dave Brett is a huge fan of them. Unfortunately, I've never seen any easy entry point into the topic... until now. These articles were actually pretty easy to follow. The focus was pretty simple, but covered the basics of identifying patterns in text strings.
Then, much to my surprise, in the May edition of the column, they took the subject on again. This time the focus was on replacing certain patterns within text strings, rather than just identifying them. While the examples were pretty simple, you can certainly see the power of them.

I'm putting this a little higher on my list now, as I can see some use for this in my own work, which means I might be able to get to it in a couple of months or so. LOL!

If you're interested, the articles I read are listed below. (And if you're not, then the links are for me when I get back to actually working with this. 😉 )

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