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split() -- split a string into many strings

dim w$(10) 

The split-function requires a string (containing the text to be split), a reference to a string-array (which will receive the resulting strings, i.e. the tokens) and an optional string (with a set of characters, at which to split, i.e. the delimiters).

The split-function regards its first argument (a string) as a list of tokens separated by delimiters and it will store the list of tokens within the array-reference you have supplied. Note, that the array, which is passed as a reference (w$() in the synopsis), will be resized accordingly, so that you don't have to figure out the number of tokens in advance. The element at position zero (i.e. w$(0)) will not be used.

Normally (i.e. if you omit the third, which is the delimiter-argument) the function will regard space or tab as delimiters for tokens; however by supplying a third argument, you may split at any single of the characters within this string. E.g. if you supply ":;" as the third argument, then colon (:) or semicolon (;) will delimit tokens.
Note, that a sequence of separator-characters will produce a sequence of empty tokens; that way, the number of tokens returned will always be one plus the number of separator characters contained within the string. Refer to the closely related token-function, if you do not like this behaviour. In some way, the split-function focuses on the separators (other than the token-function, which focuses on the tokens), hence its name.

The second argument is a reference on a string-array, where the tokens will be stored; this array will be expanded (or shrinked) to have room for all tokens, if necessary.
The first argument finally contains the text, that will be split into tokens. The split-function returns the number of tokens that have been found.

Please see the examples below for some hints on the exact behaviour of the split-function and how it differs from the token-function:

print "This program will help you to understand, how the" 
print "split()-function exactly works and how it behaves" 
print "in certain special cases." 
print "Please enter a line containing tokens separated" 
print "by either '=' or '-'" 
dim t$(10) 
	input "Please enter a line: " l$ 
	print num," Tokens: "
	for a=1 to num 
		if (t$(a)="") then 
			print "(EMPTY)" 
			print t$(a); 
		if (a<num) print "," 
	next a 


This program prints the following output:

Please enter a line: a 
1 Tokens: a 

Please enter a line: 
0 Tokens: 

Please enter a line: ab 
1 Tokens: ab 

Please enter a line: a=b 
2 Tokens: a,b 

Please enter a line: a- 
2 Tokens: a,(EMPTY) 

Please enter a line: a-= 
3 Tokens: a,(EMPTY),(EMPTY) 

Please enter a line: =a- 
3 Tokens: (EMPTY),a,(EMPTY) 

Please enter a line: a=-b 
3 Tokens: a,(EMPTY),b 

Please enter a line: a--b- 
4 Tokens: a,(EMPTY),b,(EMPTY) 

Please enter a line: -a==b-c== 
7 Tokens: (EMPTY),a,(EMPTY),b,c,(EMPTY),(EMPTY) 

Related: token