FAQ 4.31 How can I split a [character] delimited string except when inside [character]?

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4.31: How can I split a [character] delimited string except when inside

    Several modules can handle this sort of pasing---Text::Balanced,
    Text::CSV, Text::CSV_XS, and Text::ParseWords, among others.

    Take the example case of trying to split a string that is
    comma-separated into its different fields. You can't use "split(/,/)"
    because you shouldn't split if the comma is inside quotes. For example,
    take a data line like this:

        SAR001,"","Cimetrix, Inc","Bob Smith","CAM",N,8,1,0,7,"Error, Core

    Due to the restriction of the quotes, this is a fairly complex problem.
    Thankfully, we have Jeffrey Friedl, author of *Mastering Regular
    Expressions*, to handle these for us. He suggests (assuming your string
    is contained in $text):

         @new = ();
         push(@new, $+) while $text =~ m{
             "([^\"\]*(?:\.[^\"\]*)*)",?  # groups the phrase inside the
           | ([^,]+),?
           | ,
         push(@new, undef) if substr($text,-1,1) eq ',';

    If you want to represent quotation marks inside a
    quotation-mark-delimited field, escape them with backslashes (eg, "like

    Alternatively, the Text::ParseWords module (part of the standard Perl
    distribution) lets you say:

        use Text::ParseWords;
        @new = quotewords(",", 0, $text);

    There's also a Text::CSV (Comma-Separated Values) module on CPAN.


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