The book covers tasks such as how to create, delete, and merge files, how to extract data from them, and how to convert them from one format to another.
All of the scripts, applications, and other files used in the book are freely available for download from the Quick Start Workbook website. There is even a free regular expression tester (regExTester) that you can download and conveniently run from your desktop.
Together, Perl and regular expressions make a great team when it comes to processing files such as HTML and XML pages. Perl's ability to manipulate files combined with the power of regular expressions to search for and change strings within those files provide a powerful tool that can be used in many situations.
By the use of numerous examples, which are all fully explained to make sure that you understand exactly what each Perl script is doing, this workbook will teach you how to perform loads of useful file processing tasks, including how to:
- Process a list of files entered at the command line prompt.
- Process all the files of a particular type in the current folder.
- Process different types of files located in various folders.
- Use regular expressions to extract data from multiple files and combine that data into a single file.
- Use regular expressions to convert files from one type to another, for example, XML to CSV.
- Run Perl scripts from Windows applications.
- Integrate a Perl script into a text editor.
No programming experience is required at all to work through and use the sample scripts contained in this workbook, although a very basic knowledge of markup languages such as HTML and XML may be useful to make some of the examples more interesting to you, but is certainly not a prior requirement in order to understand what is going on in the examples.
Based on the author's real-life experience of needing to process HTML, XML, CSV, and other text files over the past 15 years in commercial/business environments, this book will provide you with an excellent foundation that will enable you to learn a variety of Perl and regular expression skills related to processing files.