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Regular expression syntax and the Find dialog

A regular expression is a single string that represents a set of possible strings. OmniFocus’s Find dialog supports the use of some simple ones. To get started, use Command-F to open the Find dialog, and change the Find Type setting to Regular Expression.

The examples below should work, but the list is not comprehensive. Advanced readers are invited to consult Apple’s developer documentation for the framework we’re relying on. Feature requests and bug reports are welcome.

The Find Dialog

Examples of supported syntax include:

  • a+ – one or more instances of a
  • ^ – beginning of a line
  • $ – end of a line
  • . – any character
  • [a-z] – all characters between a and z
  • [abc-] – a, b, c, or -
  • a|b – a or b
  • \n – newline
  • \d – digit
  • \D – non-digit
  • \s – whitespace
  • \S – non-whitespace
  • \ – escape the next character

Regular expressions are popular, so you should be able to find plenty of information about them on the internet or in a good library or bookstore.

Last Modified: Jan 29, 2020

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