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Split camelCase word into words with php preg_match (Regular Expression)

Hey everyone,

I hope you're doing well. I have been working with PHP recently and came across a scenario where I need to split a camelCase word into words using the `preg_match` function with regular expressions.

Let me provide you with some context. Imagine I have a variable `$camelCaseWord` which holds a camelCase word like "splitCamelCase". What I want to achieve is to split this word into individual words, which would give me the result "split", "Camel", and "Case".

I believe that `preg_match` can help me achieve this, but I'm not quite sure about the regular expression pattern I should use. I thought about using something like `/[A-Z][a-z]*/`, but that only gives me the first word ("split") and ignores the rest.

Is there any regular expression pattern that I can use with `preg_match` to achieve the desired result of splitting camelCase words into individual words? Or perhaps there is an even better alternative to `preg_match` that can help me with this task?

I appreciate any help or suggestions you can provide. Thank you in advance!

All Replies


Hey there,

I've faced a similar situation before and found a solution using `preg_match_all` instead of `preg_match`. This function allows you to match all occurrences of a pattern in a string, which will be useful in splitting camelCase words.

The regular expression pattern you can use is `/(?<!^)(?=[A-Z])/`. Let me break down this pattern for you:

- `(?<!^)` is a negative lookbehind assertion that ensures we don't match the beginning of the string. This is important because we want to ignore the first word.
- `(?=[A-Z])` is a positive lookahead assertion that matches any uppercase letter. This is important to locate the transition from lowercase to uppercase, which indicates the start of a new word.

By using `preg_match_all` with this pattern on your `$camelCaseWord`, you should be able to get an array of individual words. For example:

$camelCaseWord = "splitCamelCase";
preg_match_all('/(?<!^)(?=[A-Z])/', $camelCaseWord, $matches);
$words = preg_split('/(?<!^)(?=[A-Z])/', $camelCaseWord);

This would output:

[0] => split
[1] => Camel
[2] => Case

I hope this solution works for you as it did for me. Let me know if you have any further questions or need more clarification!


Hey folks,

A while ago, I encountered a similar situation in my PHP project where I needed to split camelCase words into individual words. I found a different approach using `preg_replace` instead of `preg_match`. Let me share my method with you, which might provide another perspective.

Instead of trying to match and capture the separate words, you can utilize the power of regular expressions to insert a space before each uppercase letter (except the first one). This way, the format becomes more readable and resembles separate words.

Here's an example code snippet that demonstrates this:

$camelCaseWord = "thisIsSomeLongCamelCaseWord";
$words = preg_replace('/(?<!^)([A-Z])/', ' $1', $camelCaseWord);

echo $words;

By running this code, you will get the following output:

this Is Some Long Camel Case Word

As you can see, by using `preg_replace` with the pattern `/(?<!^)([A-Z])/`, I added a space before each uppercase letter (except the first one) and achieved the desired result of splitting the camelCase word into separate words.

Feel free to try this approach in your own code and see if it suits your needs. Let me know if you have any questions or if there's anything else I can do to assist you!


Hey everyone,

I recently encountered a similar situation in my PHP project, and I found an interesting alternative to split camelCase words into separate words using `preg_split`. This method provides a straightforward solution without the need for complex regular expressions.

In my case, I had a camelCase word like "superLongCamelCaseExample". To split it into separate words, I used `preg_split` with the pattern `/(?=[A-Z])/`. Here's an example:

$camelCaseWord = "superLongCamelCaseExample";
$words = preg_split('/(?=[A-Z])/', $camelCaseWord);

Running this code will give you the following output:

[0] => super
[1] => Long
[2] => Camel
[3] => Case
[4] => Example

As you can see, `preg_split` split the camelCase word at each transition from uppercase to lowercase, giving us an array of separate words.

I found this approach to be quite handy as it simplifies the process and avoids the need for advanced regular expressions. Give it a try, and let me know if it works for you!

If you have any further questions or need any more assistance, feel free to ask. Happy coding!

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