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0 to 60 with Regular Expressions in 75 minutes

Regular expressions are a formal language used for manipulating and analyzing text. They are a standard features in a wide range of languages and popular tools, including Perl, Python, Ruby, Java, JavaScript, the .NET framework, PHP, and MySQL. Web servers such as Apache and IIS7 use them for URL rewriting. You can find them in tools and technologies as diverse as grep and egrep to Visual Studio. This talk will get you up and running with regular expressions. We will be discussing Regular Expressions as a language and cover the syntax with extensive demos. We will also cover the practical use of regular expressions by demonstrating best practices for writing, testing, performance optimization, readability, compilation, and design guidelines. We will use the .NET framework's flavor of regular expressions in the demos. However since .NET regular expressions like most regular expression libraries are Perl compatible, the syntax presented will generally work with a wide range of regular expression packages. The speaker will attempt to point out language variations for the major implementations.

Level: 101.

The speaker

Nima has over 15 years experience in technology as a software engineer/architect/manager/technology marketeer and entrepreneur. He has worked at Silicon Valley startups as well as large multinational corporations. He is the founder and CEO of He enormously enjoys coding, building, and creating as well as sharing and helping others. He can be found on twitter at @nimadi.


6:00 doors open (pizza and drinks)
6:10 - 6:20 Lightning talks
6:30 announcements
6:45 - 8:15 presentation
8:15 - 8:30 raffle



Can't code withoutThe Most Intelligent Add-In To Visual Studio

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  • Aidan R.

    Here's a brand new online regex debugging tool with an innovative interface that lets you scan through the regex and target character-by-character:

    February 25, 2013

  • Nagaraju

    Is Regular expression best suited to handle these sort of scenarios (Expand terms inside the brackets)?

    somefield contains (a and b or c) and someotherfield contains a and someotherfield contains b and somefield contains (e or f)

    Expand to somefield contains a and somefield contains b or somefield contains c and someotherfield contains a and someotherfield contains b and somefield contains e or somefield contains f

    But I have problems writing reg ex and it always finds longest matching. Can today's sessions discuss best way to deal with these sort of problems.

    February 20, 2013

    • nima d.

      Sorry I just saw this. We showed how to do 'ands' and 'ors' in your regex. Depending on what you are actually doing, one regex could handle it or you may decide to break it down into two or more regexes. We also discussed that the longest matching (greedy) is the default and if you want to capture the shortest (lazy) you can add the ? special character after the quantifier in your regex.

      February 21, 2013

  • Richard F.

    Very knowledgeable presenter with good information.

    1 · February 20, 2013

  • Jonathan G.

    Wanted to introduce myself, Jonathan the co-founder of referralMD, a healthcare referral workflow and analytics company.

    We are looking for a .net mvc programmer that has experience with nosql (ravendb) We have a team of 6 currently and are expanding. I should be attending this event this evening, in case we miss each other, please email me at [masked] to chat more.

    February 20, 2013

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