Programming Tips - How would you replace $variables in some text?

Date: 2007nov28 Updated: 2010nov25 Updated: 2016may11 Language: javaScript, Perl, C Keywords: template Q. How would you replace $variables in some text? A. I'll give you the answer in 3 languages. In javaScript:
function replaceDollarVariables(txt, h) { var re = /\$(\w+)/; var match; while(match = re.exec(txt)) { txt = txt.replace(match[0], h[match[1]]); } return txt; } function exampleUse() { var h = { person: 'Joe' }; var txt = replaceDollarVariables('hello $person, how are you?', h); console.log('replaced=' + txt); }
In Perl:
sub main() { my($buf, %val); $buf = 'hello $person, how are you?'; $val{person} = 'Joe'; $buf =~ s/\$(\w+)/$val{$1}/eg; # The e is key here. It means the replacement value is executed. # By the way, don't use eval(). # - it does too much - you'll have to quotemeta everything before and # then unquote it somehow after. # - you don't want to eval() untrusted stuff that might come from a web user! print "Result: $buf\n"; }
In C:
While not totally bulletproof, this function does the trick. // First, a small helper function inline char *Shuffle(char *dest, const char *src) { return (char *) memmove(dest, src, strlen(src) + sizeof(char)); } /* parameters: buf: A NUL-terminated buffer that may or may not contain a dollar variable eg "hello $person, how are you"" size: Size of buf in bytes. szVar: The name of the variable to replace. "person" in this example. szVal: The new value for the variable. eg "Joe". If the size of this new value is larger the size allocated for buf we'll have a buffer overflow. So don't allow szVal from untrusted users. */ void ReplaceDollarVariable(char *buf, const size_t size, const char *szVar, const char *szVal) { char * p = buf; size_t lenVar = lstrlen(szVar); size_t lenThisVar; size_t n = lstrlen(buf); size_t lenVal = lstrlen(szVal); while ((p = strchr(buf, '$')) != NULL) { lenThisVar = strspn(p+1, "abcdefghijklmonpqrstuvwxyz"); if (lenThisVar == lenVar && strncmp(szVar, p+1, lenThisVar) == 0) { n += lenVal - (1+lenThisVar); if (n > size) break; Shuffle(p+lenVal, p+1+lenThisVar); memcpy(p, szVal, lenVal); p += lenVal; } } } // Example use: void main() { char buf[1024] = "Hello $person, how are you?"; ReplaceDollarVariable(buf, "person", "Joe"); printf("Result: %s\n", buf); }
If you want a full-fledged templating system, check out: And there are many others.