What is a Regex (Regular Expression)?

A regex (short for regular expression) is a sequence of characters used to specify a search pattern. It allows users to easily conduct searches matching very specific criteria, saving large amounts of time for those who regularly work with text or analyze large volumes of data. An example of a regex is \b[A-Z0-9._%+-]+@[A-Z0-9.-]+\.[A-Z]{2,6}\b, which is a statement that can be used to search for email addresses. In that statement, the information in brackets [] specifies the criteria that will be searched for – in this case, any combination of characters and numbers. Regex is used in search engines, text editors, and often in programming languages to search for and return designated values.

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