[R] removing leading/trailing blanks

Sundar Dorai-Raj sundar.dorai-raj at pdf.com
Wed Feb 19 22:14:04 CET 2003

Douglas Grove wrote:
> Hi,
> What's the best way of dropping leading or trailing
> blanks from a character string?  
> The only thing I can think of is using sub() to replace
> blanks with null strings, but I don't know if there is
> a better way (I also don't know how to represent the
> trailing blank in a regular expression).

I would use gsub instead:

R> ch = "    lkj df klj lkjsdf  "
R> ch
[1] "    lkj df klj lkjsdf  "
R> gsub("^ .", "", ch) # remove leading white space
[1] "lkj df klj lkjsdf  "
R> gsub(". $", "", ch) # remove trailing white space
[1] "    lkj df klj lkjsdf"


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