Using Bash to Change the Delimiter in a CSV File


The Problem

I recently had a situation where I had a comma separated value (CSV) file that I wanted to easily parse within a shell script. Unfortunately the CSV data contained some double quoted strings with embedded commas, for example:

"Adygeya, Republic",RU-AD,21250,RU,Russian Federation

This made parsing the file quite painful, particularly as only the strings with an embedded comma were double quoted like this.
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Effective Learning: Quantity vs. Quality

A close up of a pink eraser on the end of a pencil

(C) D Sharon Pruitt

Many other fields, such as software development, are huge and constantly changing. As a result, it’s very important to keep your skills and knowledge up to date. However, there is far more to know than you can realistically expect to ever learn, and since new things are always emerging, it presents a moving target that you can never catch up with.

This presents a big dilemma: do you try to gain a broad knowledge, or do you accept you’ll never learn everything and make sure that what you do study you learn in detail . In essence, do you choose quantity or quality, breadth or depth?
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BCS South West: The Birth of a Third Platform

A pile of iPhones on top of an iPad

(C) Blake Patterson

“The Birth of a Third Platform” was a talk given by Lawrence Stephenson from Apple UK on the 27 September 2010. It wasn’t entirely clear what the talk would be about or what direction it would go in before it started, but something relating to mobile seemed a safe bet.

Indeed, Lawrence’s talk was about the emergence of the mobile platform and its implications for Higher Education (HE). It struck me as a slightly odd topic because I wasn’t sure how many BCS members have an interest in HE issues, but the impression I got was that Lawrence is some kind of evangelist for mobile technology (specifically Apple’s mobile tech, naturally) in HE.

Fortunately the talk had drawn quite a crowd (easily more than the 40 that the committee had decided to cater for at their previous meeting), and they seemed to mainly be students, so I’m sure there would be something of interest for them.

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Disabling Geolocation in Firefox

Firefox 3.5 Geolocation Permission Prompt

If you've ever seen this box below your Firefox tabs, then you've encountered Firefox's location aware browsing ((C) Kai Hendry)

You may not have realised it, but the latest versions of Mozilla Firefox include a geolocation feature to enable location aware browsing.
This allows you to give permission to share your location with websites, and is on by default.
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Dodgy DNS in BT Home Hub 2.0

BT Logo

(C) Paul Downey

This is one of my problem and solution type posts for a nasty little problem I recently encountered with a BT Home Hub 2.0 and my Windows XP Pro x64 laptop that prevented me from successfully browsing the internet, despite having a working internet connection.

I don’t know the underlying reason for this problem, so can’t predict whether or not this will be useful to other people, but just in case it is, I’m detailing it here.
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eXtreme Programming and the Capability Maturity Model

Two programmers pair programming at an iMac

(C) Lisamarie Babik

An essay I wrote for my software measurement and quality assurance module discussing how eXtreme programming can be implemented in a business and in such a way that it can satisfy the capability maturity model.
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NottTuesday: Get Funded!

A pile of Money

(c) Tracy O

On June 2nd I went up to Nottingham for NottTuesday. The topic was “Get Funded!” and there were 3 speakers: Mark Chandler (Relationship Manager at Lloyds TSB) discussing bank finance, Chris Scarth (co-founder and commercial director of Prime Principle) sharing his experiences of angel investment, and Robert Cawdron (Fund Manager at E-Synergy) talking about venture capital.
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BCS South West Agile Testing Talk

On 20th May 2010, the South West branch of the BCS hosted by Jon Tilt and Richard Coppen from IBM who gave a lecture called “Agile software testing’ – A practical view of testing in a large scale agile development environment”. Jon and Richard work as Chief Test Architect and Test Architect respectively and shared their experiences of testing and agile testing in large projects.

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Doug Richard’s School For Startups at the University of Leicester 10/05/10

On 10th May, Doug Richard (@DougRichard), of Dragon’s Den fame, brought his School For Startups (@s4s) to the University of Leicester (@UniofLeics ) to deliver a 6 hour workshop called “Start Here! Starting and Growing a Successful Business”. I was in the audience and here are my impressions of the event.
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To What Extent is it Sensible to See Civilisation IV as a Game of Strategy?

This is an assignment I wrote for my third year strategy module with the University of Leicester‘s School of Management. In the module, as well as studying theories and looking at criticism of business strategy, we played a multiplayer game of Civilisation IV as an alternative to the usual case studies. This was because the module leaders felt that a case study, which gives the answers to the questions it poses within the text and always has an answer, did not reflect the realities of strategy in practice. Civilisation IV on the other hand is a dynamic and changing strategy simulation, which they felt could be used as an alternative teaching tool so that students could experience first hand elements of strategy in action.
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