> I am trying to parse out some characters from a string and I am having
> some trouble because the string may have a space or it may not.
> Basically I have a string that looks like this:
>
> Seattle, WA[SEA]   or
> Colorado Springs, CO[COS]   or
> Denver, CO[DEN]
>
> What I have so far to match the Seattle and Denver strings looks like
> this:
>
> /[A-Z]{1,1}[a-z]+[,]\s[A-Z]+\[{1,1}/
>
> This regular expression is trying to grab everything within the []; in
> the cases above this would be SEA, COS, DEN.

If you want to grab everything in brackets, why do you care about the  
text before them?
You could do just:

 >> "Seattle, WA[SEA]"[/\[(.+)\]/,1]
=> "SEA"
 >> "Colorado Springs, CO[COS]"[/\[(.+)\]/,1]
=> "COS"

etc.



Cheers,
Peter
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