Chris Radcliff chris_radcliff at
Fri May 14 13:07:51 CDT 2004

On May 14, 2004, at 10:38 AM, Bruce Timberlake wrote:
> Shouldn't that be
> $FORM{'subject'} =~ s/[^A-Za-z0-9\.]//g;
> Doesn't a "." without an escaping \ match *any* character? If so, that
> would throw away *anything* in the incoming string! :)

Nope, it's a character class. "." loses its special meaning. (Besides, 
I always run a small program to check my PM replies these days. Folks 
are finicky about stuff workin'. ;)  I think that "\." in a character 
class would actually retain the "\" character, but I'm too lazy to 

> And now that I'm looking at it more, doesn't that regex actually
> change the characters he wants to keep, and leave all the
> undesirables in the string??

Nope, that's what the [^] negation is for.  A very handy thing, that 
negation. "Dump everything but what I want."  I use it for HTML 
escaping and suchlike.




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