Wildcard Character

Wildcard Character

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A wildcard character is a special character used in pattern matching to represent one or more characters. It is often used in search operations or when working with filenames, text strings, or regular expressions. The wildcard character allows for flexible matching, as it can match multiple characters or a range of characters.

The most commonly used wildcard characters are:

  1. Asterisk () – Matches zero or more characters in a string. For example, “cat” matches “cat,” “cart,” “carrot,” and so on.
  2. Question mark (?) – Matches any single character in a string. For example, “h?t” matches “hat,” “hot,” “hit,” and so on.

Wildcard characters can be combined with other characters or used alone to create complex search patterns. Here are a few examples:

  • “s*p” matches “sap,” “sip,” “stop,” and any other word that starts with “s” and ends with “p.”
  • “b?ll” matches “ball,” “bell,” and any other four-letter word starting with “b” and ending with “ll.”
  • “*.txt” matches all files with the “.txt” extension in a directory.

It’s important to note that wildcard characters may vary depending on the context or programming language being used. They are powerful tools for searching and filtering data, enabling flexible and efficient matching in various applications.

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