Julia 101

3 min readApr 11


Lesson 6: Working with Strings

In Julia programming language, strings are a fundamental data type used to represent text. They are a sequence of characters enclosed in double quotes. Working with strings in Julia can involve many different operations, such as concatenation, formatting, and searching. In this post, we will explore the basics of working with strings in Julia and some of the built-in functions available to manipulate them.

Creating a String

Creating a string in Julia is simple. We can use double quotes to enclose a sequence of characters, like this:

my_string = "Hello, world!"

This code creates a string variable called my_string with the value "Hello, world!".

Concatenating Strings

We can concatenate strings using the * operator. For example:

first_name = "John"
last_name = "Doe"
full_name = first_name * " " * last_name
print(full_name) # Output: John Doe

Formatting Strings

Julia provides several built-in functions to format strings. One of the most commonly used is the println() function, which prints its arguments to the console with a newline character at the end.

age = 30
println("I am $age years old.")

In this code, the value of the variable age is interpolated into the string using the $ symbol. The resulting string is then printed to the console.

We can also use the string() function to convert other data types to strings.

age = 30
println(string("I am ", age, " years old."))

This code produces the same output as the previous example.

Other built-in string formatting functions in Julia include @sprintf and @printf. These functions provide more advanced formatting options, such as padding, truncation, and precision.

Searching for Substrings

We can search for substrings in a string using the findfirst() or occursin() functions.

my_string = "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog."
if occursin("fox", my_string)
println("The string contains 'fox'.")

The occursin() function is used to check if the string "fox" appears in my_string.

We can also use the findfirst() function to find the index of the first occurrence of a substring.

my_string = "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog."
index = findfirst("fox", my_string)
if index != nothing
println("The first occurrence of 'fox' starts at index $index.")

The findfirst() function is used to find the index of the first occurrence of the substring "fox" in my_string. The resulting index is then printed to the console.

Traversing a String

We can traverse a string using a for loop and the eachindex() function, like this:

my_string = "Hello, world!"
for i in eachindex(my_string)

This code loops through each character in my_string and prints it to the console.

Slicing a String

We can slice a string using the substring() function or by indexing the string, like this:

my_string = "Hello, world!"
substring = substring(my_string, 1, 5)
println(substring) # Output: "Hello"

substring = my_string[1:5]
println(substring) # Output: "Hello"

This code slices my_string to get the first 5 characters and prints the resulting substring.

Other Built-In String Functions

Julia provides many other built-in functions to manipulate strings. Here are a few examples:

  • length() - returns the number of characters in a string
  • uppercase() - converts a string to uppercase
  • lowercase() - converts a string to lowercase
  • replace() - replaces occurrences of one substring with another
  • split() - splits a string into an array of substrings based on a delimiter




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