Regular expressions in pattern matching

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nacogdoches
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Joined: Wed Jun 27, 2007 10:40 am

Regular expressions in pattern matching

Post by nacogdoches » Mon Nov 12, 2012 1:39 pm

Now that I am seeing robocallers being more creative in their raw names and raw numbers (for example, a name that is the 10 digits of the number), it would be nice to be able to create a pattern to match all similar names or numbers. But for that to work, the pattern matching templates have to be more versatile than just % and _. Regular expressions (a la unix) would be nice!
Bob
Houston

Bill Root
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Re: Regular expressions in pattern matching

Post by Bill Root » Wed Nov 14, 2012 7:21 am

Hi Bob,

Thanks for the suggestion. I wasn't aware that the current pattern matching was insufficient for some callers. I assume you'd have to add too many (current) patterns to catch the callers?
nacogdoches wrote:for example, a name that is the 10 digits of the number
If you mean the name equals the phone number, normal regular expressions wouldn't detect it. Care to share an example?


Finest regards,
Bill Root
Ascendis Software LLC

nacogdoches
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 27, 2007 10:40 am

Re: Regular expressions in pattern matching

Post by nacogdoches » Wed Nov 14, 2012 8:33 am

Example from yesterday: Raw number: 2063971421, Raw name: 2063971421. I *know* anybody who calls with a name/number like this is not someone I want to hear from, and I want to block the call. But I don't want to block just the number (206) 397-1421, I want to block *all* calls that use the number as the name, just as I block all calls whose name is "CARD SERVICES". The difficulty here is that there appears to be no way to set up a name pattern like the regexp "[0-9]+"
Bob
Houston

Bill Root
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Re: Regular expressions in pattern matching

Post by Bill Root » Wed Nov 14, 2012 8:52 am

Thanks for the example. Regular expressions don't have any facility (as far as I know) for matching two strings from two different sources, let alone only if they're the same. So in this case it seems like a function for matching identical names and numbers would be required.

If you're saying you would like to block all calls with names consisting only of digits, then regular expressions would work. Is that the case?

Finest regards,
Bill Root
Ascendis Software LLC

nacogdoches
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 27, 2007 10:40 am

Re: Regular expressions in pattern matching

Post by nacogdoches » Thu Nov 15, 2012 9:34 am

Yes, that is what I'm saying. If a raw name consists only of the digits 0-9 then I want to be able to block it. Note that as the pattern wildcards (% and _) are presently configured, there is no way to distinguish numeric characters from alphabetic. If you implemented the robust unix style regexp for both name and number patterns, it would open up a lot of possibilities. OTOH, building a *correct* regexp can be very difficult and the corresponding help documentation would have to be extensive. I'd be happy with just another meta character to represent numeric characters, say "#", so that I could build a name pattern that looked like #########.
Bob
Houston

Bill Root
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Re: Regular expressions in pattern matching

Post by Bill Root » Thu Nov 15, 2012 1:34 pm

Thanks for the explanation, Bob. I understand now. Your request is on the list!

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