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Sort TStrings objects with extra functionality ala UNIX style parameters

   

TStringList has a Sort method and a Sorted property. This feature is not available in TStrings.

This class allows sorting of TString objects with extra functionality ala UNIX style parameters. (Yes I know UNIX is a four letter word but they do have some neat features). The SORT algorythm utilizes the QUICK SORT method. The features I have implemented are

Options:

  • Sort descending – srtDescending
  • Treat sort field as numeric – srtEvalNumeric
  • Ignore leading blanks in field – srtIgnoreBlank
  • Ignore case of field – srtIgnoreCase

Switches:

  • -k – Start,End position of substring for search
  • -f – Field number of a delimited string (Zero column based)
  • -d – Character delimiter for -f switch (Default = SPACE)

In it's simplest form the class just sorts the TStrings ascending e.g.

SuperSort.SortStrings(Memo1.Lines,[]);

Assume a semi-colon delimited list like:

'Mike;34;Green'
'harry;25;Red'
'Jackie;6;Black'
'Bazil;9,Pink'
'john;52;Blue'

To sort this list DESCENDING on AGE (Field 1) and ignore case:

SuperSort(MyStrings, ['-f 1','-d ;'],
  [srtDescending,srtEvalNumeric,srtIgnoreCase]);

Assume a string list of:

'1999 12 20 AA432 Comment 1'
'2002 10 12 SWA12 Some other words'
'1998 09 11 BDS65 And so on and so on'

To sort this list on ITEM CODE (Positions 12 to 17) with no options

SuperSort(MyStrings,['-k 12,17']);

Methods:

procedure SortStrings(StringList: TStrings; Switches: array of string;
  Options: TSuperSortOptionSet = []);

Switches is a string array of -k,-d and -f settings. If it is set to empty array [] then NO switches are active. Options is an OPTIONAL set of [srtDescending,srtIgnoreCase,srtIgnoreBlank,srtEvalNumeric] The default is empty set [].

Properties:

SortTime : TDateTime;

Returns the time taken for the sort for stats purposes.

Usage Example:

uses
  SuperSort;

procedure TForm1.Test;
var 
  Srt: TSuperSort;
begin
  Srt := TSuperSort.Create;
  Srt.SortStrings(Memo1.Lines,[],[srtIgnoreBlank]);
  Label1.Caption := 'Time : ' + FormatDateTine('hh:nn:ss:zzz',Srt.SortTime);
  Srt.Free;
end;

The unit.

unit SuperSort;

interface

uses 
  Classes,SysUtils;

// ==========================================================================
// Class TSuperSort
// Mike Heydon Nov 2002
//
// Sort class that implements Unix style sorts including ..
//
// SWITCHES
// --------
// -k [StartPos,EndPos]  - Keyfield to sort on. Start and End pos in string
// -d [Field Delimiter]  - Delimter to use with -f switch. default = SPACE
// -f [FieldNumber]      - Zero based field number delimeted by -d
//
// OPTIONS SET
// ============
// srtDescending         - Sort descending
// srtIgnoreCase         - Ignore case when sorting
// srtIgnoreBlank        - Ignore leading blanks
// srtEvalNumeric        - Treat sort items as NUMERIC
//
// ==========================================================================

type
  // Sort Options
  TSuperSortOptions = (
    srtDescending,srtIgnoreCase, srtIgnoreBlank,srtEvalNumeric
  );
  TSuperSortOptionSet = set of TSuperSortOptions;

  // ============
  // TSuperSort
  // ============
  TSuperSort = class(TObject)
  protected
    function GetKeyString(const Line : string) : string;
    procedure QuickSortStrA(SL : TStrings);
    procedure QuickSortStrD(SL : TStrings);
    procedure ResolveSwitches(Switches : array of string);
  private
    FSortTime : TDateTime;
    FIsSwitches,
    FIsPositional,
    FIsDelimited,
    FDescending,
    FIgnoreCase,
    FIgnoreBlank,
    FEvalDateTime,
    FEvalNumeric : boolean;
    FFieldNum,
    FStartPos,FEndPos : integer;
    FDelimiter : char;
  public
    procedure SortStrings(StringList : TStrings; Switches : array of string;
      Options : TSuperSortOptionSet = []);
    property SortTime : TDateTime read FSortTime;
  end;

// --------------------------------------------------------------------------
implementation

const
  BLANK    = -1;
  EMPTYSTR = '';

// ================================================
// INTERNAL CALL
// Resolve switches and set internal variables
// ================================================

procedure TSuperSort.ResolveSwitches(Switches : array of string);
var
  i : integer;
  Sw,Data : string;
begin
  FStartPos := BLANK;
  FEndPos := BLANK;
  FFieldNum := BLANK;
  FDelimiter := ' ';
  FIsPositional := false;
  FIsDelimited := false;

  for i := Low(Switches) to High(Switches) do
  begin
    Sw := trim(Switches[i]);
    Data := trim(copy(Sw,3,1024));
    Sw := UpperCase(copy(Sw,1,2));

    // Delimiter
    if Sw = '-D' then
    begin
      if length(Data) > 0 then FDelimiter := Data[1];
    end;

    // Field Number
    if Sw = '-F' then
    begin
      FIsSwitches := true;
      FIsDelimited := true;
      FFieldNum := StrToIntDef(Data,BLANK);
      Assert(FFieldNum <> BLANK,'Invalid -f Switch');
    end;

    // Positional Key
    if Sw = '-K' then
    begin
      FIsSwitches := true;
      FIsPositional := true;
      FStartPos := StrToIntDef(trim(copy(Data,1,pos(',',Data) - 1)),BLANK);
      FEndPos := StrToIntDef(trim(copy(Data,pos(',',Data) + 1,1024)),BLANK);
      Assert((FStartPos <> BLANK) and (FEndPos <> Blank),'Invalid -k Switch');
    end;
  end;
end;

// ====================================================
// INTERNAL CALL
// Resolve the Sort Key part of the string based on
// the Switches parameters
// ====================================================

function TSuperSort.GetKeyString(const Line : string) : string;
var
  Key : string;
  Numvar : double;
  DCount, i, DPos : integer;
  Tmp : string;
begin
  // Default
  Key := Line;
  // Extract Key from switches -k takes precedence
  if FIsPositional then
    Key := copy(Key,FStartPos,FEndPos)
  else
    if FIsDelimited then
    begin
      DPos := 0;
      DCount := 0;
      for i := 1 to length(Key) do
      begin
        if Key[i] = FDelimiter then
         inc(DCount);
        if DCount = FFieldNum then
        begin
           if FFieldNum = 0 then
             DPos := 1
           else
             DPos := i + 1;
          break;
        end;
      end;

      if DCount < FFieldNum then
        // No such Field Number
        Key := EMPTYSTR
      else
      begin
        Tmp := copy(Key,DPos,4096);
        DPos := pos(FDelimiter,Tmp);
        if DPos = 0 then
          Key := Tmp
        else
          Key := copy(Tmp,1,DPos - 1);
       end;
    end;

  // Resolve Options
  if FEvalNumeric then
  begin
    Key := trim(Key);
    // Strip any commas
    for i := length(Key) downto 1 do
      if Key[i] = ',' then delete(Key,i,1);
    try
      Numvar := StrToFloat(Key);
    except
      Numvar := 0.0;
    end;
    Key := FormatFloat('############0.000000',Numvar);
    // Leftpad num string
    Key := StringOfChar('0',20 - length(Key)) + Key;
  end;

  // Ignores N/A for Numeric and DateTime
  if not FEvalNumeric and not FEvalDateTime then
  begin
    if FIgnoreBlank then Key := trim(Key);
    if FIgnoreCase then Key := UpperCase(Key);
  end;

  Result := Key;
end;

// ==============================================
// INTERNAL CALL
// Recursive STRING quick sort routine ASCENDING.
// ==============================================

procedure TSuperSort.QuickSortStrA(SL : TStrings);

  procedure Sort(l,r : integer);
  var
    i, j : integer;
    x, Tmp : string;
  begin
    i := l;
    j := r;
    x := GetKeyString(SL[(l + r) div 2]);

    repeat
      while GetKeyString(SL[i]) < x do
        inc(i);
      while x  < GetKeyString(SL[j]) do 
        dec(j);
      if i <= j then 
      begin
        Tmp := SL[j];
        SL[j] := SL[i];
        SL[i] := Tmp;
        inc(i);
        dec(j);
      end;
    until i > j;

    if l < j then
      Sort(l,j);
    if i < r then
      Sort(i,r);
  end;

begin
  if SL.Count > 0 then 
  begin
    SL.BeginUpdate;
    Sort(0,SL.Count - 1);
    SL.EndUpdate;
  end;
end;

// ==============================================
// INTERNAL CALL
// Recursive STRING quick sort routine DECENDING
// ==============================================

procedure TSuperSort.QuickSortStrD(SL : TStrings);
  
  procedure Sort(l,r : integer);
  var 
    i, j : integer;
    x, Tmp : string;
  begin
    i := l;
    j := r;
    x := GetKeyString(SL[(l + r) div 2]);

    repeat
      while GetKeyString(SL[i]) > x do
        inc(i);
      while x  > GetKeyString(SL[j]) do
        dec(j);
      if i <= j then  
      begin
        Tmp := SL[j];
        SL[j] := SL[i];
        SL[i] := Tmp;
        inc(i);
        dec(j);
      end;
    until i > j;

    if l < j then
      Sort(l,j);
    if i < r then 
      Sort(i,r);
  end;

begin
  if SL.Count > 0 then
  begin
    SL.BeginUpdate;
    Sort(0,SL.Count - 1);
    SL.EndUpdate;
  end;
end;

// ====================
// Sort a stringlist
// ====================

procedure TSuperSort.SortStrings(StringList : TStrings;
  Switches : array of string; Options : TSuperSortOptionSet = []);
var
  StartTime : TDateTime;
begin
  StartTime := Now;
  FDescending := (srtDescending in Options);
  FIgnoreCase := (srtIgnoreCase in Options);
  FIgnoreBlank := (srtIgnoreBlank in Options);
  FEvalNumeric := (srtEvalNumeric in Options);
  ResolveSwitches(Switches);

  if FDescending then
    QuickSortStrD(StringList)
  else
    QuickSortStrA(StringList);

  FSortTime := Now - StartTime;
end;

end.
Author: Mike Heydon
Contributor: Loris Luise
Added: 2010-12-17
Last updated: 2010-12-17

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