Grep Beyond the Terminal

You don’t have to use the command line to take advantage of grep and regular expressions. Several text editors offer built-in find functions that harness the same (or similar) regular expressions. These include Smultron (free), Nisus Writer Express ($60), and Bare Bones’ BBEdit and Text Wrangler ($179 and $49). Even Microsoft Word ($399 with Microsoft Office Standard Edition) includes its own variety of regular expressions.

Here are two articles that will show you more:

• “Word Productivity,” March 2004: Use Word’s regular expressions to do complex search and replace commands in a flash.

• “Transform HTML with Regular Expressions,” February 2004: Learn the basics of regular expressions and drastically simplify your HTML editing in BBEdit.

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