in reply to Re: Regex error when [] occurs in file..
in thread Regex error when [] occurs in file..

Thanks both---I didn't realise that $' was treated like that. Are all 'special variables' ($&, $N (N is integer)) expanded in that way too? So if you did something like:
$temp =~ m/(\[0-9\])blah$1/;
would you match
$temp = "[0-9]blah6";
rather than
$temp = "[0-9]blah[0-9]";
V. interesting---I assumed that special characters inside the rest of the data would be ignored..
<--edit to make the last sentence make more sense!-->
Those are my principles. If you don't like them I have others.
-- Groucho Marx

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Re^3: Regex error when [] occurs in file..
by Joost (Canon) on Mar 03, 2008 at 16:11 UTC
Re^3: Regex error when [] occurs in file.. ($1 vs. \1)
by almut (Canon) on Mar 03, 2008 at 16:31 UTC
    $temp =~ m/(\[0-9\])blah$1/;

    I think you meant

    $temp =~ m/(\[0-9\])blah\1/;

    in which case any special characters in the content of the backreference \1 would not be treated special. IOW, "[0-9]blah[0-9]" would match, but not "[0-9]blah6":

    #!/usr/bin/perl use strict; use warnings; for my $temp ("[0-9]blah[0-9]", "[0-9]blah6") { printf "%-15s ", $temp; if ($temp =~ /(\[0-9\])blah\1/) { print "matched\n"; } else { print "didn't match\n"; } }


    [0-9]blah[0-9] matched [0-9]blah6 didn't match

    while, if you replace \1 with $1 in the above regex, it prints

    Use of uninitialized value in concatenation (.) or string at ./671663. +pl line 8. [0-9]blah[0-9] matched [0-9]blah6 matched

    This is because $1 isn't defined here, thus the regex effectively becomes /(\[0-9\])blah/...

    Update: added demo code.