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Old July 28th, 2006, 03:53 AM
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Default Checking regex with replace and URI test

We tried to figure out how to test a valid date pattern where also a year is valid. Herefore we needed a "only ONE of the patterns must be true" construction but when we use the OR in the regexp
the "match" function acts more likely as a find function. Ergo an OR returns true if ONE or MORE expressions is true.
This is the Date check regex (remove the LineBreaks I put that in for readability):


We check the date but also only a year like 2004 is valid. So if I enter 2004-20-18 (which is no valid date) returns true when I use the match function, because the first part (2004) is a valid expression. But when I use the "replace" function it works OK. Because if a specific part of the OR does not match the function will return nothing. If more parts are true it returns more replace characters.

test = "replace(./datetime,'((P)(((([1-9])(\d)*)(J)){{0,1}}((([1-9])(\d)*)(M))
((T(([1-9])(\d)*(\.((\d)*([1-9])(\d)*)){{0,1}})(S)){{0,1}}))','x') = 'x'"

So if I check "A or B" and it turns out that A and B are true the function returns "xx" but when you want to check if there is only but one true I check if the return value is equal to "x".

We also have made a regular expression for a URI it was huge...and could not be used in the xslt because of the many "&" characters in it. We tried the "instance of" construction but that also did not work.
But thanx for the WROX book "XPATH2.0 programmers reference" that explains everything I needed, the construction:
test="data('http:www.wrox.com') castable as xsd:anyURI" works fine to test a valid URI. (or do I reveal now some secrets from the book)
so thanx for that.
Old July 28th, 2006, 05:19 PM
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I'm sorry, I'm having difficulty working out exactly what you are trying to do.

My advice would be to avoid trying to do this all with regular expressions. Use the regex functionality to pick out something that looks like a plausible date, and then use other techniques (eg. $x castable as xs:date) to see if it is in fact a valid date.

Perhaps if you explained your overall requirement (that is, what are the input and output of your transformation) it would be clearer, and alternative designs might suggest themselves.

Michael Kay
Author, XSLT Programmer's Reference and XPath 2.0 Programmer's Reference

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